MOSCOW, July 22 (RIA Novosti) – A Ukrainian prosecutor said Monday that there was “unquestionable” evidence that two police officers were involved in a brutal gang rape last month that triggered protests around the former Soviet nation.
A 29-year-old woman from the southern town of Vradiyivka has accused two police officers and a taxi driver of abducting, beating and raping her on June 26. After authorities released one of the officers, claiming he was on duty that night, hundreds of local residents sieged and set fire to a police station, demanding justice for the single mother, who is still being hospitalized.
Within a week, Ukraine’s Interior Ministry admitted that local officials had tried to conceal police wrongdoing. The officer who had been released was detained, and two senior regional police officials and a prosecutor were fired.
Andrei Kurys, another prosecutor in the region, was quoted by the Unian news agency as saying Monday that his agency had obtained evidence that “essentially and unquestionably proves” the involvement of the two accused officers in the rape.
Prosecutors also said they would re-investigate the 2011 rape and murder of a 15-year-old girl in Vradiyivka, local media reported. Although that case remains unsolved, 11 men have reportedly confessed to committing the crime, two of whom are said to have committed suicide.