Three arrested for suspected gang rape of girl, 16, in north

Police say teen was taken by one of the suspects to Karmiel area, where others allegedly joined in assaulting her for hours

Illustrative image of a criminal in handcuffs. (YakobchukOlena/iStock, by Getty Images)
Illustrative image of a criminal in handcuffs. (YakobchukOlena/iStock, by Getty Images)

Police on Tuesday arrested three men in connection with the suspected gang rape of a 16-year-old girl in the north of the country.

The arrests came after a complaint was filed a few days ago, the Israel Police said in a statement.

An initial investigation found that one of the suspects picked up the girl from her home and drove her in his car to an area of villages near the town of Karmiel. There, together with others, he allegedly raped her over a period of several hours.

Police initially said two suspects, reportedly in their 20s, from villages in the area were arrested. A court extended the remand of one of the suspects until Wednesday and the other until Thursday.

Later in the day another suspect was arrested.

Police have assessed that up to four people were involved in the assault, Haaretz reported.

Karmiel police set up a special team to conduct the investigation, which is ongoing, according to the police statement.

Activists protest against recent cases of violence against women in Tel Aviv on March 7, 2021. (Tomer Neuberg/Flash90)

The incident comes after several recent high-profile cases involving violence against women in Israel, a phenomenon that has drawn protest demonstrations — one was held Saturday in Tel Aviv — demanding the government take action against the episodes.

Last month a man was arrested after being accused of raping a girl, 13, in a state-run coronavirus quarantine hotel where they were both staying.

Also in February, a police officer was charged with murder for allegedly shooting his wife dead in the West Bank settlement of Na’ale earlier in the month.

Days earlier a man was sentenced to 15 years in prison for the rape and premeditated murder of his former wife’s 12-year-old daughter.

In September last year 11 men were indicted in the alleged gang rape of a 16-year-old girl at a hotel in Eilat in a case that shocked the country and spurred calls for reforms.

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