A Sydney schoolgirl raped by her uncle in Lebanon has been reportedly been saved by Australian police as she feared for her life after rejecting arranged marriage.
The 15-year-old was sent to Beirut by her parents after telling them she was raped by a 21-year-old neighbour, The Daily Telegraph reported.
Believing she was no longer “pure”, her parents put the girl and her sister on a flight to live with her father’s brother with the intention to marry her cousin.
But the teenager refused the marriage and rebuffed any advances from her relative, angering his father.
“The uncle said: ‘OK, if you want nothing to do with my son, you can come into my bed’,” Detective Senior Constable from the NSW Police Child Abuse and Sex Crimes Squad, Tara Chapman, told News Corp.
The teenager told Detective Chapman she was then drugged and raped multiple times by her uncle, who had ordered his wife to vacate their bedroom.
In a bid to cover up his tracks, he told the girl he would kill her if she spoke of his actions.
“I felt paralysed, I was conscious but I couldn’t move,” the girl told Detective Chapman about the regular abuse.
A NSW Police spokesperson told Yahoo News Australia they first came into contact with the girl in November 2017 when she reported her alleged rape by her neighbour at a western Sydney police station, leading to Detective Chapman’s involvement in the case.
Urgent action taken by police to bring teen home
The next time police heard from the girl was when she managed to access her uncle’s phone and tell a friend of her abuse via Instagram.
The friend immediately told Detective Chapman, who used the friend to liaise with the girl and reassure her everything was going to be OK during her ordeal and urged her to try and find a way to come home.
She eventually told her sister of the abuse, who bungled some clothes into a bag and led her sister to their aunt, who believed the girl’s story after she showed the drugs she had been given.
The aunt, her father’s sister, immediately contacted the girls’ mother who then made a desperate call to Detective Chapman asking for help to bring her daughter home.
The aunt took the girls to the police station where the girl was medically examined, leading to her uncle’s arrest.
Due to the nature of her uncle’s threats to the girl’s life, the AFP rushed to save her, retrieving the girls’ passports from local police and put them on a flight back to Sydney in April.
The neighbour’s charges of sexual assault from the alleged 2017 were later dropped after the girl struggled to give evidence in court.
A NSW Police spokesperson told Yahoo News Australia that the girl was keen to reveal her story “so other girls know there is a way out” of arranged marriages.
The spokesperson said the best advice for girls who may be a victim in similar circumstances to the girl to visit My Blue Sky – an Australian website which provides support for young women being forced into marriage against their will.
My Blue Sky can be contacted on 02 9514 8115 for support, with the site urging those in immediate need of help to contact Triple-0.
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