The Grand Criminal Court acquits defendant in online assault case


Published: 2024-06-21 20:46

Last Updated: 2024-07-13 05:12

Illustrative photo.
Illustrative photo.

The Grand Criminal Court recently acquitted a twenty-year-old man accused of electronically assaulting a 17-year-old schoolgirl.

The case revolved around the student’s claim that she was a victim of online sexual exploitation. According to her account, the perpetrator used Snapchat to request that she remove her clothes, subsequently capturing a nude image of her.However, the court found insufficient legal evidence to support the charge of indecent assault without violence or threats. The defendant’s age and lack of conclusive proof played a crucial role in the decision.

The prosecution had referred the defendant to trial based on information received from Interpol regarding child sexual exploitation.

The schoolgirl had filed a complaint, alleging that she was exploited by an individual using Snapchat. The court’s decision highlighted the need for clear evidence regarding the victim’s age, emphasizing the importance of birth records to establish age and apply appropriate legal definitions.

The court also considered the burden of proof on the prosecution. It required evidence that the defendant had engaged in live video communication with the victim, displaying what society considers indecent. However, the provided evidence did not conclusively link the defendant to the crime.

Regarding the Interpol report, the court noted that it dated back to March 2023, while the defendant claimed to have interacted with a girl from Cyprus six months earlier.

The alleged incident involved exchanged nude photos and video calls. Ultimately, due to the lack of compelling evidence, the court ruled in favor of the defendant, emphasizing the importance of evaluating evidence and excluding confessions when necessary.