(Reuters) – Malaysian police have detained 13 men and are looking for other suspects following allegations that a 15-year-old girl was raped by 38 men in an abandoned hut, media said on Friday.
Astro Awani television and The Star daily reported that the assault took place in the northern state of Kelantan on May 20 when the girl met a girlfriend and was lured to an empty hut reported to be a local drug haunt.
The men took turns to rape her for hours. Police were also investigating whether her 17-year-old friend was also raped.
Related, from a Malaysian site: Gang rape of teen in Kelantan proves need for hudud, argues PAS: Party vice-president Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man said the incident which took allegedly took place on May 20 proved that the existing secular justice system have failed to serve as a deterrent while arguing that hudud*, which metes out severe punishment, could have helped prevented rape and other crimes from taking place.
“The incident is testimonial to how criminals are not shaken nor fear the existing legal system… the effectiveness of the current legal system is now in doubt as crime rates climb.
“But humans have so far refused to admit the inadequacy of man-made laws to deter criminals although this country faces a moral calamity… humans remain stubborn to choose a legal system which they deem greater than that of their creator,” he said in a statement.
Rape is a major bone of contention for critics of hudud.
Detractors argue that the Islamic penal law’s requirement for rape victims to present four credible Muslim witnesses to support her allegations could provide culprits with loopholes and lead to easy acquittal.
*Hudud: Hudud (literal meaning “limit,” or “restriction”) is the word often used in Islamic literature for the bounds of acceptable behaviour and the punishments for serious crimes. In Islamic law or Sharia, hudud usually refers to the class of punishments that are fixed for certain crimes that are considered to be “claims of God.” They include theft, fornication (zina) and adultery (extramarital sex), consumption of alcohol or other intoxicants, and apostasy (see apostasy in Islam).