Thomas Brooke, Remix, August 17, 2023
An Afghan migrant found guilty of attempted rape in Sweden has avoided jail and deportation, and will instead serve 140 hours of community service, a court ruled on Monday.
The crime dated back more than 10 years to July 27, 2013, when a woman reported being attacked by two male migrants whom she met at a festival in the western Swedish town of Uddevalla.
The victim told police at the time of the offense that she had been pushed to the ground by the men, who tore off her clothes and attempted to force her to have sex. According to the Samnytt news outlet, the victim told police that she had been penetrated by the men’s fingers, but was unsure whether they had managed to fully penetrate her with their penises.
After a commotion, the attackers fled the scene, and the victim was found by passers-by half-naked on a park bench. She had also been robbed.
Authorities obtained DNA evidence of one of the perpetrators from the thigh of the victim at the time of the offense; it could not be linked to anyone on the police database and was consequently stored securely.
It was not until 10 years later that Afghan migrant Ali Akbar Ghorbani, now 27 years of age, would be revealed as the perpetrator following a routine traffic stop. His DNA was tested at the scene and found to be a match for the 2013 attempted rape, just days before the 10-year statute of limitation expired for the offense.
He was subsequently arrested and refused to answer any questions during a police interview, denying his involvement in the crime.
Anette Fogelberg of the Uddevalla Prosecutor’s Office opted to prosecute Ghorbani for attempted rape due to insufficient evidence that the rape had fully taken place.
Ghorbani was subsequently found guilty of sexual assault and sentenced by the Uddevalla District Court on Monday to a suspended prison sentence and ordered to serve 140 hours of community service. He was also ordered to pay 52,000 Swedish kronor (€4,385) in damages to the victim.
The public prosecutor had called for Ghorbani to be deported back to Afghanistan due to the severity of the offense, a submission dismissed by the court, which claimed that a deportation request would only be approved in “extraordinary” circumstances.
The court noted that “more than 10 years have now passed since the crime was committed” and acknowledged that Ghorbani was a minor at the time of the offense — he would have been 17 years of age — and thus, found no good reason to issue a deportation order back to Afghanistan.
Despite the lenient ruling, Fogelberg expressed her satisfaction with the verdict, telling Swedish broadcaster SVT: “It is quite satisfying that such an old case has been solved.”