Questioned for Hours, Three Israeli Suspects Deny Rape of British Tourists

Cyprus police struggles to complete preparations for lineup

Israeli tourists arrive to appear before a magistrate for a remand hearing in the Famagusta courthouse in Paralimni, Cyprus July 18, 2019.
\ YIANNIS KOURTOGLOU/ REUTERS

AYIA NAPA – Police in Larnaca, Cyprus said Sunday they have completed the questioning of three Israelis in the alleged rape of a British tourist. One of them is considered one of two main suspects in the case. The other one was questioned on Saturday.

The interrogation of the three suspects in the Larnaca police station lasted seven and a half hours. They all denied that a rape took place, saying the sex was consensual.

Police investigators examined whether the two main suspects’ accounts matched each other. Additional suspects in the case are expected to be questioned on Monday.

Nir Yaslovich, a lawyer who is representing a number of the suspects, said a significant development in the case has occurred – relating to the videos found on the suspects’ cell phones.

According to the law in Cyprus, the police cannot conduct a confrontation between the suspects and the woman who said she was raped, but they will hold a lineup for purposes of identifying the suspects. The police are having a hard time finding the 60 people needed to hold such lineups – requiring five people per lineup for each of the 12 suspects being held.

The charge sheet against the suspects states that they are suspected of forcibly restraining the British woman and raping her – until she managed to flee from the room without her clothes. The woman said she met two friends, told them what happened and they took her to a clinic. They later helped her file a complaint with the police.

The punishment for rape in Cyprus is 10 to 12 years in prison.