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Society

UK Woman Appealing Cyprus Gang Rape Lie Conviction Seeks Reversal

September 16, 2021

NICOSIA — A British woman who was 19 in 2019 when she was convicted of lying about a gang rape on Cyprus, who now said it was a forced confession, is hoping her lawyers can overturn that decision in an appeal to the country's Supreme Court.

The appeal was to be heard Sept. 16 and one of the lawyers, Michael Polak, from the Justice Abroad group, said: “Decisions in the Supreme Court tend to come within six months but we hope for it to come sooner.”

She was given a suspended four-month sentence by a judge who found her guilty of public mischief following a trial closely watched by women's and rights group who came to her defense.

She initially said she was forced to have sex by a group of up to 12 young Israeli tourists who, after being acquitted, returned home to applause. The incident was said to have happened in her hotel room at the holiday resort of Ayia Napa.

After going to police to report she was raped by the men she signed a retraction 10 days later but later said it was coerced by authorities who pressured her into doing it and the Foreign Office said it was “seriously concerned” that was the case, the British newspaper The Independent reported.

She was held nearly months in prison before being released on bail at the end of August, 2020 to return home but has kept up her hope to reverse her conviction and said she wasn't lying about what happened and wants to clear her name.

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