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British teen denies faking Cyprus gang rape accusation, trial Oct. 2

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British teen denies faking Cyprus gang rape accusation, trial Oct. 2
A British tourist covers her face as she is escorted to a police car outside the Famagusta courthouse in Paralimni, Cyprus July 29, 2019. REUTERS/Yiannis Kourtoglout   -   Copyright  YIANNIS KOURTOGLOU(Reuters)
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PARALIMNI, Cyprus (Reuters) – A British teenager who accused a group of Israeli youths of gang-raping her in Cyprus pleaded not guilty on Tuesday to charges of making up the accusation.

The 19-year-old was arrested after police said she withdrew an accusation that 12 Israeli teenagers raped her in a hotel room in the holiday resort of Ayia Napa in mid-July.

Her lawyers have told reporters she says she withdrew her accusation under duress.

A court in the town of Paralimni ordered her released on bail before the trial which is due to start on Oct. 2. She has spent a month in custody.

The charge the teenager faces, of public mischief, carries a maximum penalty of a year in jail or a fine.

The Israelis, who were on holiday in Cyprus, were detained and later released without charge. They had denied any allegation of assault and have since returned to Israel.

(Reporting By Michele Kambas; Editing by Andrew Heavens)

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