Four teenage asylum seekers have been arrested in connection with the rape of a 15-year-old girl at an unnamed school in Kent, England.
The alleged attack occurred on Monday, Feb. 6, at a school in Dover where the four suspects reportedly attended school with the victim.
It is understood that one of the suspects raped the girl while the other three boys pinned her down and kept a “lookout,” a source close to the case told The Times newspaper.
Authorities confirmed that one boy, aged 15, was arrested on suspicion of rape and the three others, aged between 13 and 16, were arrested on suspicion of facilitating the attack. They have since been released on bail pending further investigation.
The four suspects are all understood to be Afghan nationals, and all four arrived in Britain unaccompanied and illegally via small boats across the English Channel last year.
They have since been in the care of Kent County Council’s social services department.
Kent Police confirmed it is “investigating a report of a sexual offense involving a teenage girl and a teenage boy in Dover on the afternoon of Monday, Feb. 6, 2023.
“Four boys were arrested as part of the investigation and have since been released on bail while inquiries continue,” a police spokesperson added.
The victim was interviewed by specialist officers. She is understood to still be “distressed” over the attack, but has withdrawn her cooperation from the police inquiry, The Sun newspaper reported.
A source told the newspaper on Sunday: “The allegations are extremely serious, and police are trying to establish exactly what happened.
“All four boys are refugees and are therefore deemed to be vulnerable.”
Commenting on the news, Conservative broadcaster Nigel Farage claimed, “Every day we become a little more like Sweden. Anyone that speaks out against this is denounced.”
Former editor of The Sun newspaper, Kelvin McKenzie, questioned the lack of coverage of the story by Britain’s public broadcaster. “I listened to the 7 a.m. and 8 a.m. news on BBC Radio 4’s Today program for their coverage of the 4 Afghan boys accused of rape. Nothing. Supposing 4 white boys had raped a 15-year-old Afghan girl, would that be a story? I think we know the answer to that,” he tweeted.
Alex Phillips, an adviser to the Reform UK party and former Brexit MEP, called for Britain to have the “uncomfortable discussion” about the “thousands of undocumented young men from different cultures” who have arrived in Britain across the English Channel in recent years.
“If this isn’t addressed, expect more protests of the kind seen in Knowsley,” she added, referring to the scenes witnessed in a town in Merseyside, England, on Friday, where a protest against migrants living in a nearby hotel turned violent and resulted in 15 arrests and three injuries.
The demonstration was intensified after footage showing an adult asylum seeker living in the hotel propositioning a 15-year-old schoolgirl in the area went viral on social media.
UPDATE: In a later statement, Kent Police revealed the suspects had been released without charge, adding: “No evidence of a criminal offense having taken place has been established and no further action is to be taken, unless any relevant additional information is received.”