Photo courtesy of Supreme Court of Kosovo.

BIRN and I/KS Demand Investigation of the Institutional Chain for Rape of 11-Year-Old

BIRN and Internews Kosova ask for an investigation of the institutions that handled the minor rape case.

The Balkan Network for Investigative Journalism, BIRN, and Internews Kosova, I/KS, have asked acting Chief State Prosecutor Besim Kelmendi to delegate the investigation into the handling of the case of the 11-year-old girl who was reported as a victim of sexual violence to the Special Prosecutor’s Office. 

The request comes after BIRN announced that when the 11-year-old girl was first questioned in June, she named three people who had allegedly raped her. Information received by BIRN shows that they were not arrested.

BIRN and I/KS, in a letter to the Chief Prosecutor, emphasize the need to investigate the entire institutional chain for not taking due action, starting from the police officers, the relevant social worker, the defender of the victim and the state prosecutor.

BIRN and I/KS also mention the Prishtina Prosecutor’s Office conference on September 5, as a reason for sending the case to the Special Prosecutor’s Office.

“Given that the Prosecutor’s Office of Prishtina, at the conference organized for the media, gave information that everything was dealt with in time and according to the law, and did not mention that the victim had given the names of the three suspects, we consider that such an action was done to eliminate suspicions of the following bodies,” the letter states.

In their letter, the NGOs ask the Chief State Prosecutor to carefully analyze the entire criminal file of the handling of the case by each institutional actor, to analyze the statement of the girl at the Prosecutor’s Office and to assess why the three persons that she named have not been arrested. 

The only way to remove doubts about the justice bodies is to delegate the case from the Prosecutor’s Office of Prishtina to the Special Prosecutor’s Office, since the investigation by the Prosecutor’s Office of Prishtina has lost its purpose, according to BIRN and I/KS.

Police arrested 11 people within two weeks of the rape.  The first five were arrested on suspicion of having raped the girl in August. Six others were arrested at the beginning of September on suspicion of trafficking and rape of the 11-year-old in June.

After the girl reported the first case in June, she was heard by the state prosecutor in the presence of a social worker. According to the still unconfirmed information that came to BIRN, the minor gave the names of the three suspects. 

However, the arrests only took place more than two months later, at the beginning of September, after the second round of rape allegations gained a lot of media attention. 

and 12/09/2022 - 17:16

12 September 2022 - 17:16

Prishtina Insight is a digital and print magazine published by BIRN Kosovo, an independent, non-governmental organisation. To find out more about the organization please visit the official website. Copyright © 2016 BIRN Kosovo.