French court to rule on landmark case of 22 firemen accused of raping a child

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France’s highest appeal court, the Cour de cassation, on Wednesday examined the case of Julie, a young woman who accuses 22 Paris firemen of raping her over a two-year period when she was aged between 13 and 15. The accused claim the child consented to the sexual relations, and at the end of a ten-year investigation just three of them face trial for sexual abuse after criminal charges of rape were dropped. The Cour de cassation will announce its ruling on March 17th when Julie, and the feminist and child protection associations supporting her cause, hope the case against the accused will be amended to rape. For Julie, who agreed to be interviewed by Mediapart, the future decision of the Cour de cassation represents her last chance to seek justice.

 

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This report was updated on February 10th 2021 after the Cour de cassation hearing.