A 40-year-old Congolese illegal immigrant has been arrested for the attempted rape of a 24-year-old French woman on Rue Quinault in the 15th arrondissement of Paris, with police saying that the man confessed to wanting a “beautiful White woman” and trying to gag his victim with popcorn.
The alleged perpetrator, who is in an irregular situation and has no permanent address, was arrested a day after the attack on Oct. 3, but information about his migrant status is only now coming to light.
On Sunday last week, in the early morning, the young woman was on her way to work when she noticed that a man was following her. He approached the victim while holding a bag of popcorn and asked her for information, but she said that she immediately noticed she was in danger. She made a phone call to her relative, but the person never answered their phone.
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The women woke up in their apartments to a man lying next to them, who then proceeded to sexually assault them
According to police, the attacker then threw himself at her, tackled her to the ground, and began to grope her and pull off her pants. The young woman began screaming, “Rape!” while struggling against her attacker, including sticking her finger in his eye.
“He tried to take off his pants and also the victim’s pants, and then shoved popcorn in her mouth to prevent her from screaming,” said a police source, according to Actu17. Despite the popcorn, the victim still managed to scream.
A number of people in the area ran to the victim. One witness opened his window and took a photo of the assailant, who then began to flee the scene. The image of the suspect proved invaluable to the investigation, according to police.
“That was enough to recognize the attacker,” said a police source.
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“You have to consider the cultural difference and the psychological background,” the Afghan migrant’s attorney said. “Where he comes from, pornographic images on cell phones are common.”
The next day, the 40-year-old man tried to rob a shop owner at knifepoint in a neighboring district, resulting in his arrest.
At the police station, the suspect was recognized from the image taken of him the previous day, resulting in his arrest for sexual assault as well as rape. The victim also recognized the attacker behind a one-way glass lineup.
Police say that the man told them after his arrest that he was motivated to rape the woman because he did not have enough money for a prostitute.
“The attacker said he had no money to pay a prostitute in Strasbourg-Saint-Denis and said, ‘I wanted to have a beautiful White (woman),'” said a police source.
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The defense argued that the cultural factor should be taken into account when it came to sentencing the Afghan man
Investigators interrogated the man, asking him what would have happened if witnesses had not intervened, to which the man reportedly smiled in response. An expert was brought in who testified that the man was criminally responsible for his actions. The suspect is currently being prosecuted for sexual assault and theft, but police are investigating if he is tied to any other cases.
France has been beset with a number of similar cases, including a Tunisian migrant who raped an English tourist directly on a street in France. In August of this year, a North African migrant was arrested for raping an American tourist in a Paris public toilet while her partner waited outside. Such cases have been seen across Europe, with Girogia Meloni recently posting a video of a migrant raping a woman directly on the streets of Italy in the middle of the day, which sparked international headlines.
The trend of migrants being vastly overrepresented in sexual assaults and other serious crimes is present across Europe; however, pointing this out can sometimes be dangerous. For example, in Sweden, two respected academic researchers have been prosecuted for publishing a study detailing the massive overrepresentation of foreigners in rape cases.
France has also seen a dramatic increase in murders and rapes in recent years, which has coincided with a dramatic rise in immigration from North Africa, Africa, and the Middle East. According to the French interior minister’s office, 48 percent of criminal acts in Paris are committed by foreigners, while this figure is 55 percent in Marseille.