Twelve young Israelis, all males in their late teens, are heading to court on Thursday following accusations by a young British woman who says she was a victim of gang rape at a hotel in Ayia Napa.
Police on Wednesday arrested twelve young men aged between 16 and 18, following a complaint by a 19-year-old female tourist from the UK who said some of the men raped her shortly after midnight in a hotel room.
Reports said the woman had met one of the suspects and the two had gone back to his hotel room, while another suspect was acting as an interpreter.
The complainant told police that other suspects barged into the room shortly after, with some of them recording video with their phones while others assaulted her sexually and raped her.
Yaniv Habari, the lawyer of the suspects who are described as conscripts soon to join the Israeli army, told Haaretz that he met with his clients but declined to comment further.
Some reports from Israel said some of the suspects called home to tell their families they didn’t do anything wrong and that they didn’t understand the charges against them.
Foreign media have been reporting on the incident since Wednesday, putting the spotlight on the resort town known as a party town and major tourist attraction.
Additional unconfirmed reports said British tourists who were guests at the same hotel allegedly attacked Israeli men following the incident. It was also reported that both the alleged victim and all suspects had been staying at the same local hotel.
The Israeli consul in Nicosia, Yossef Wurmbrand, is said to be in contact with the detained suspects, while the Israeli foreign ministry is also following the case.
The British woman was examined by a medical doctor, who completed an exam and submitted the findings to police investigators.
A remand hearing has been scheduled for Thursday morning.