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Ukraine: two police officers named as suspects in rape case

Ukraine: two police officers named as suspects in rape case
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A second police officer has been named as a suspect in a controversial Ukrainian rape case, in which another policeman and a taxi driver have already been arrested.

The regional prosecutor has requested that Evgen Dryzhak be detained in relation to the rape of Irina Krashkova, which took place near the southern Ukrainian town of Vradiyivka.

Krashkova told euronews that two policeman were involved her assault, naming Dryzhak one of them. He was not initially held with the other suspects and said he had an alibi.

The fact that both policeman were not arrested immediately has caused an outcry in Vradiyivka.

Angry demonstrators attempted to storm the police station and officers reportedly used tear gas to push them back.

One local woman said: “We were keeping silent, but now they (the police) are abusing their power as much as they can. We have evidence from the victim and she says that policeman Dryzhak was the first who raped her. People here want to support her.”

Many of the protesters suspect that Dryzhak’s family connections could be the reason why the policeman appeared to be evading justice.

Krashkova’s brother Gennadiy Krashkov told euronews: “She can barely walk. She keeps giving her statement and repeats the same to reporters. Of course, she feels bad, but we hope that tomorrow will be better.”

Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych has launched a top-level inquiry into the case.

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