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Defendants sentenced to 10 to 20 years in prison

The Rabat Court of Appeal issued, in the early hours of this Friday, one of the strictest verdicts with increased sentences ranging from 10 to 20 years in prison against the three guilty of repeated rapes of the minor to Tiflet, the convictions at first instance having been deemed “too lenient and unsustainable”.

The Rabat Court of Appeal thus pronounced a sentence of 20 years in prison and 60,000 dirhams in damages to be paid to the civil party against the main defendant and father of the child born as a result of the rape, while the two other defendants were sentenced to 10 years in prison and a fine of 40,000 dirhams.

This decision was taken during the second appeal hearing in the case of the 12-year-old girl, victim of repeated rape for a year by three individuals and who found herself pregnant by one of her rapists. The court heard behind closed doors the child victim who confirmed that she had been raped by the three criminals.

The court also heard the witness who came to court with a social worker as part of the accompaniment and support procedures, as well as the three defendants who denied all the charges against them.

The representative of the Public Prosecutor considered in his argument that ” the original judgment rendered in this case was correct in convicting the defendants. However, we do not agree with the Criminal Trial Chamber in its assessment of the sentence and its decision to allow the defendants to enjoy mitigating circumstances.“. In this sense, he demanded Ie maintenance of the preliminary judgment in terms of conviction and the imposition of the most severe sentence against the defendants“.

The victim’s defence, in turn, requested that the sentence pronounced in the first instance against the defendants be increased to its maximum, and demanded a monthly allowance by way of alimony for the benefit of the newborn baby aged one year and a few dust until he reaches the age of majority.

The defense of the defendants, for its part, sought to exculpate the three defendants, and to make them benefit from the mitigating circumstances. However, the Court ultimately delivered a verdict deemed “deserved” and the “severest” for such a gruesome rape case.

The case of the young girl Sana has aroused the interest of national and international public opinion but also anger among human rights and civil society activists, after the Criminal Trial Chamber rendered , last March, a verdict described as “shocking”, “unfair” and too “lenient”.

The first defendant had been sentenced to two years in prison and the other two to 18 months, for “embezzlement of a minor” and “indecent assault on a minor with violence resulting in defloration”, in accordance with the provisions of articles 471, 485 and 488 of the Penal Code.



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