Case involving alleged multiple rape, abuse crimes processed in Finland

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HELSINKI, April 24 (Xinhua) -- A court in Oulu, Finland, has began dealing with the case involving alleged multiple sex crimes that got unprecedented publicity in Finland from late 2018.

There were eight suspects in the case. The victim was a girl under the age of 15 who had allegedly been for several months subjected to aggravated rape and aggravated sexual abuse.

The alleged crimes had been committed in the apartments of the suspects, the Finnish News Agency STT reported. There will be eight separate trials and verdicts.

On Tuesday charges were presented to a 21-year-old man. He has arrived in Finland as an asylum seeker from Afghanistan. His lawyer Jaana Piipari said he denied all the charges. The next suspect will seen in court on Friday.

The presiding judge told the court that all documents of the case and the court recordings were to be kept secret until 2079. Media photographers were allowed into the court room for the start. The suspect had his face covered.

Prosecutor Pia Maenpaa demanded that the verdict be published when given, only withholding the name of the victim. The court will later decide to what extent the verdict will be published.

Maenpaa did not tell the media what her demands were. Under Finnish law, five to ten years of imprisonment can be sentenced on account of aggravated sexual abuse of a child. For aggravated rape the sentence can range between two and five years imprisonment.

Maenpaa said all the suspects did not know each other. They had allegedly made contact with the girl on the internet. Maenpaa said the case was a typical case of seeking friends via the internet. Enditem

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