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Three men charged over Uppsala 'Facebook rape video'

From the Swedish edition of The Local

Three men are to face trial in Sweden in connection with the alleged rape of a woman in an Uppsala apartment which was live streamed on Facebook.

The men were arrested in January after police were alerted to a suspected ongoing sexual assault by witnesses, who reported seeing it live in a closed Facebook group.

Two of the men, a 20-year-old Afghan national and an 18-year-old also from Afghanistan, are charged with rape. The third man, a 24-year-old Swedish citizen, has been charged with failing to reveal rape. He is also charged with defamation, over the filming and live-streaming of the incident. All three deny the charges.

Investigators have been able to acquire still images and video material, but not the particular sequence which allegedly shows the rape, despite asking for the material from Facebook in the US. The 18-year-old's lawyer has challenged whether the charges should have been brought before that part of the film has been sourced.

The Uppsala district court chief prosecutor argued at a short press conference on Wednesday however that the investigation has been rigorous. There are however witnesses who say they saw either the entire incident or part of it, with a total of eight witnesses heard. The woman, who was under the influence of alcohol and therefore considered by Swedish law to have been in a particularly vulnerable situation, also had her injuries documented by a doctor.

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