The family of the British teenager accused of making false gang rape allegations in Ayia Napa has launched a crowdfunding bid to raise £15,000 to pay her legal fees.
Entitled ‘'Help teen victim get justice in Cyprus’, the GoFundMe bid is intended to assist the 19-year-old in her battle against charges of ‘public mischief’ – she faces a potential prison sentence of up to a year if convicted.
The page is administered by lawyer John Hobbs, and states the family intend to appoint an expert legal team to represent the teenager in regard to the matter, and expose the alleged breaches of her rights by Cypriot police while in custody.
The family maintain the statement she gave to police withdrawing her allegations of gang rape by 12 Israelis was given under duress and in breach of her rights. It led to the collapse of the investigation into the dozen teenagers and charges of public mischief being made against her.
“In the early hours of 28th July 2019, following a week of traumatic events, our daughter was arrested for allegedly making a false allegation of rape in Cyprus and is currently being detained in prison awaiting trial…She’s alone in prison abroad after an awful series of events, we just want to bring her home. We’re seeking funds to pay for the required legal representation in Cyprus,” the page states.
It goes on to note Justice Abroad has been providing assistance within the UK, bringing together an “expert legal team” drawn from both Nicosia and London to challenge “the many breaches of her rights”.
Justice Abroad’s Michael Polak said she was given a statement to sign after eight hours in a police station without access to legal representation – it led to seven Israeli men being released from prison and allowed to return home. Police in Cyprus deny the woman was mistreated and forced to withdraw her rape allegation.
Five other individuals were arrested but released after DNA tests failed to link them to the alleged crime scene. Mobile phone footage of the woman allegedly having consensual sex with the group was later released by one of the men involved and has spread like wildfire across online porn sites and messaging apps in Israel.