24/06/2021

THAILAND DAILY

NEWSPAPER / MAGAZINE / PUBLISHER

horror-as-mum-gang-raped-in-front-of-kids

Horror as mum gang raped in front of kids

Two men who gang raped a French mother in front of her children when her car ran out of petrol in Pakistan last year have been sentenced to death.

The verdict in the case against Abid Malhi and his accomplice Shafqat Ali was issued inside the prison where the pair are being held in Lahore, the capital of the Pakistani province of Punjab.

Judge Arshad Hussain Bhutta also sentenced the pair to 14 years’ imprisonment – time that must be served before any executions can take place.

Authorities said that the men found the woman waiting for help after her car ran out of petrol. Even though she had locked the doors of the vehicle, the attackers broke a window and dragged her outside, before raping her at gunpoint in front of her terrified children.

The men also stole the woman’s money, jewellery and bank cards before they fled the scene.

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They were tracked down, prosecutor Hafiz Asghar said, via mobile phone data, and were arrested days after the incident.

The survivor identified the two men during a hearing, and Ali confessed to the crime before a magistrate.

The trial has been closely followed on Pakistani television, and the crime has drawn widespread protest, with human rights activists urging the government to introduce harsh new penalties for rapists.

Nearly 1000 women in Pakistan are killed each year in so-called “honour killings” for allegedly violating conservative norms on love and marriage.

Last November, Prime Minister Imran Khan approved in principle a law to chemically castrate rapists.

According to local media GeoTV, the former cricket captain of Pakistan made the decision in a federal cabinet meeting, saying at the time: “We need to ensure a safe environment for our citizens.”

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Mr Khan said he would not tolerate any delay in the legislation and that the law would be clear and transparent.

Rape survivors will be able to make police complaints without fears their identities will be exposed, Mr Khan said.

The PM was among a number of other Pakistani politicians who had previously called for public hangings of convicted rapists and child molesters – after the French woman was raped in Lahore.

“I think he (the rapist) should be hanged publicly. Rapists and child molesters should have public hanging. You do not know the real statistics as well, because it’s under-reported,” Mr Khan told local radio station News 92.

“People do not report it due to being scared or ashamed, women are ashamed, no one wants to tell.”

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