Three arrested for suspected gang rape of 19-year-old in Eilat hotel room

Police say suspects, in their 20s from the village of Ein Naqquba, attacked woman in hotel room; media reports say they plied her with alcohol at club

Illustrative: A view of the resort city of Eilat and its hotel strip. (Oleg Zaslavsky/Shutterstock.com)
Illustrative: A view of the resort city of Eilat and its hotel strip. (Oleg Zaslavsky/Shutterstock.com)

Eilat police arrested three men on suspicion of gang-raping a local woman in a hotel room, the Israel Police said in a statement Sunday.

The alleged victim’s father reported the incident to police on Saturday.

The father told police that three men assaulted his daughter in the hotel room after bringing her back there in the early hours of Saturday morning, according to the statement.

Though police initially said the woman was in her 30s, Hebrew media reports said the woman was 19 and was engaged in civilian national service, an alternative to mandatory army service.

She met the three men at a club and they plied her with alcohol before taking her back to the room, the reports said.

Following the alleged assault, the woman telephoned her father, saying she felt unwell and needed a taxi. Her father noticed that she had bruising and questioned her about what happened, and she told him she had been raped.

The two then contacted police, reports said.

Police said in the statement that officers soon identified the suspects, residents of Ein Naqquba, an Arab village in the central district of the country, in their 20s.

They were questioned on suspicion of gang rape, violence, and serious sex offenses while taking advantage of the woman’s condition, the statement said.

The three were to face a remand hearing at the Eilat Magistrate’s Court later in the day.

Police said they intended to ask for an extension of their custody.

Earlier this year, a district court sentenced two men to lengthy periods behind bars for their part in a 2020 gang rape in Eilat.

The pair led a list of 11 suspects accused of taking part in a shocking rape that scandalized the country, with testimony indicating that men and boys lined up to assault the victim as eyewitnesses failed to intervene.

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