The Straits Times
Published on Jan 08, 2013

Maldives court should treat raped girl as victim: Official


MALE (AFP) - The Maldives government urged leniency on Tuesday for a teenager who could face public flogging for having premarital sex, saying she had been traumatised by earlier repeated rapes by her stepfather.

President Mohamed Waheed's spokesman Masood Imad said the 15-year-old should be treated as a victim rather than a perpetrator of a crime.

"There is no possibility for the president to directly intervene in a court process, but our hope is that she will be treated as a victim of a horrible crime against her," Imad told AFP by telephone.

The stepfather is accused of repeatedly raping the girl and murdering a child he fathered with her. He could face up to 25 years in prison, Imad said.