October 18, 2000

Five Dominican police detained for allegedly raping French woman

                  SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic (AP) -- Police detained five officers
                  Wednesday as they investigate a French woman's charges that she was raped in
                  a police station.

                  The woman, a restaurant owner in the southern town of Juan Dolio, had been
                  taken to the police station in nearby San Pedro de Macoris on October 7 after
                  getting into a traffic accident, said police spokesman Nelson Rosario.

                  The woman said the officers first demanded a 15,000-peso ($950) bribe because
                  the papers of her rented car were not in order.

                  When she went to use the police station's bathroom, a police officer in civilian
                  clothes put his pistol against her neck and ordered her to take off her clothes,
                  she told investigators. She alleged another police officer then raped her, Rosario

                  He said the woman had complained to the French embassy and the police
                  department's internal affairs department.

                  Copyright 2000 The Associated Press.