Monday, February 18, 2013

Israel: Acre Resident, 18, Indicted in Physical Assault, Attempted Rape of British Tourist, 35

According to Israel Hayom, Mahmoud Tabrani, 18, an Acre resident, has been indicted by a court in Haifa in the assault and attempted rape of a British tourist, 35.

The victim was reportedly severely beaten up and pushed to the ground in an attempt to culminate forcible rape. As a result, the assailant has been remanded into custody.

According to the Justice Ministry, the victim, 35, and her husband, both of whom were touring Acre earlier this month [February] when she noticed that her scarf was missing. She began retracing her steps, while her husband returned to their vehicle. The woman returned to the site of Napoleon's cannon in the Old City, where she was approached by Mahmoud Tabrani.

Tabrani made efforts to befriend the victim, only to be met with disinterest, which resulted in the assailant forcing himself upon her and attempting to remove her clothing. The more she resisted, the more aggressive he became. Subsequently,  Tabrani grabbed the victim by the hair and slammed her head into the ground several times. He also punched her repeatedly, although eventually she was able escape.

COMMENT: One study conducted by the British Foreign Office revealed that from 2005 to 2006, British women reported 127 sexual assaults in Greece, Turkey and Spain alone.

Women of all nationalities, but particularly those traveling solo, should have a keen sense of personal security awareness whenever abroad and should avoid security vulnerabilities that will place them in situations where they may be taken advantage of.

Most studies on incidents of rape reveal that where a weapon is not used to intimidate a rape victim, physical resistance is very, very effective. Studies have also shown that where a weapon is not used, victims of sexual assault are not physically injured any more  than those who don't resist.

This report will be updated as new information becomes available.