AFGHANISTAN: SEVEN MEN GIVEN DEATH SENTENCES IN GANG RAPE CASE
|Afghan President Hamid Karzai
September 7, 2014: Seven Afghan men were sentenced to death following a gang rape case that has sparked national outrage.
The men were found guilty of kidnapping and attacking four women who were returning to Kabul after a wedding in August. Five were convicted of rape.
Afghan President Hamid Karzai had been among those who called for the men to be executed.
The men were said to have carried out the attack on 23 August.
Police said the men were wearing police uniforms when they stopped a convoy of cars near Paghman, a town near Kabul. The men pulled out four of the women, and robbed and attacked them.
At least one of the victims had to spend a week in hospital following the attack. Another was said to be pregnant.
Seven of the 10 men thought to be involved were arrested on Wednesday (September 3), with the remaining three on the run.
The trial on Sunday (September 7) lasted two and a half hours.
One of the accused was 35 and others were between 19 and 27 years old.
The death sentences for the seven men were actually handed down for the crime of armed robbery, with 20-year prison sentences for assault.
Additionally, five of the men were given a further 15 years for rape.
The men still have the option of appealing their sentences.
Kabul police chief Zahir Zahir said that the men "confessed to their crime within two hours of their arrest". (Sources: Bbc, 07/09/2014)