Greek police have launched a manhunt after four Middle Eastern migrants, one from Afghanistan and three from Pakistan, who are accused of abducting and gang-raping a 25-year-old Greek woman who is three months pregnant.
While the young woman had been walking towards the Omonia neighborhood in Athens where she had planned to have her mobile telephone fixed, she was violently accosted by an Afghan man who forced her into a secluded, darkened area before raping her. As she was being sexually assaulted, the expectant mother cried out to three Pakistani passersby to help her. However, instead of coming to her assistance, the men called a taxi, transported her to an underground apartment nearby, and gang-raped her, Greek newspaper Proto Thema reports.
Three of the Pakistani migrants, aged 19, 21, and 27, have been apprehended by Greek police, but the fourth Afghan suspect remains at large.
As the gang-rape took place, neighbors from the adjacent apartments heard the girl’s frantic screams and went to their balconies to investigate who was crying for help. Fearing that they would be apprehended by the concerned neighbors and the police, the alleged rapists decided to let the victim leave the apartment.
After escaping the apartment, the young female immediately went to the St. Panteleimon Department, reported the crime, and pointed out the apartment where she was allegedly raped by the foreigners. Within hours, three of the four perpetrators were arrested and charged with conspiracy to commit rape. The fourth Afghan suspect, however, remains at large and is wanted by Greek authorities.
Crime scene investigators have gathered DNA evidence from the victim’s clothing with the hope that it will lead them to the fourth suspect, as well as prove the guilt of the three Pakistani men.
Last month, Greek police arrested a 34-year-old Pakistani in an Athens suburb for attacking and attempting to rape underage girls and a 22-year-old. Police managed to track down the attacker after the 22-year-old victim recorded a video of him and uploaded it to social media. The man stands accused of attempted rape, insult of sexual dignity, indecency, and minor bodily harm and violence.
In March, another Pakistani man was arrested on the Greek island of Crete on suspicion of assaulting and attempting to rape a local woman. The victim told police that the man approached, threatened her with a knife, and beat her up while attempting to rape her. The man is also believed to have sexually harassed five other women.
In December of last year, a Pakistani migrant appeared in court for raping an 8-year-old boy and attempted rape of two other women.
In 2014, a Greek court sentenced Ahmed Waqas, an illegal immigrant from Pakistan, to life in prison after finding him guilty of brutally beating and raping 15-year-old Myrto Papadomichelaki on the island of Paros in 2012. Following the attack, the teenage victim was found unconscious with a severe head injury which resulted in permanent brain damage. During court proceedings, Waqas admitted to bashing the teenage girl’s head with a stone and hiding her behind a pile of rocks at the popular Paros beach, where the mother and daughter had been vacationing. The mother of the victim told the court that her daughter was so badly disfigured by the attack that she could barely recognize her at the hospital. The case prompted Greek authorities to crack down on illegal immigrants in Athens, with police carrying out 7,000 arrests in a three-day period.
The issue of sexual assault and migrants remains a sensitive one, with those with a foreign background disproportionately represented in sexual assault statistics, including in Italy, France, Germany, and Sweden.