Anger as firefighter 'who had sex with 13-year-old girl' not charged with rape

A dispute over the age of consent erupted in France after a firefighter who allegedly had sex with a teenage girl was not charged with rape.

There is no official age of consent in France and the case has sparked protests and a nationwide debate on the issue.

‘Julie’ claims she was attacked by a group of 20 men over a period of two years after being tended to by a firefighter.

The victim, who is only known by first name, says the Parisian fire service worker helped her with severe anxiety when she was 13 years old in 2008.

But she claims he later raped her before 20 men visited her home a total of 130 times over the next 24 months – leaving her “scared” and scarred, both physically and mentally.

Three of the men accused admitted to having sex with Julie, but claim the encounters were consensual The sun.

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France does not have a law on the age of consent, so a child is not automatically considered a rape victim.

Adults who sleep with children under the age of 15 can be convicted in France. However, attorneys must prove the sex was not consensual in order to receive a rape conviction.

In contrast, sex with children under the age of 13 is considered legal rape in the UK, as minors cannot legally authorize sexual activity.

Lawyers for the Court of Cassation, the Supreme Court of Appeals, will argue that all 20 men should be charged with rape, and activists hope a conviction could lead to a change in the law.

It is believed that Pierre obtained Julie’s contact number from her medical record, which clearly states her age, and bombarded her with “loving messages” before asking her to undress on a video chat.

Julie claims Pierre then gave her phone number to another firefighter after she agreed to undress.

Her mother told authorities that she was initially pleased that Pierre was interested in her daughter’s health.

She said, “I even made a cake for the firefighters. We were grateful they took care of Julie when she was sick.”

But the mother claims Pierre raped her daughter in January 2009 when she was walking the dog – and left the firefighter alone with Julie.

It is then alleged that Pierre brought the then 14-year-old back to his apartment in full uniform and raped her in November of that year.

France's highest court is reviewing the case

Two other firefighters then came over and allegedly raped the child while watching pornography.

Julie told her mother about the abuse when she was cleared of her medication in 2010 and then filed a complaint with the police.

The men alleged to have raped Julie at Pierre’s were questioned and two admitted to having “group sex” with the child.

A third admitted having sex with her in a hospital toilet while she was being treated in Paris – but claims he does not know that the underage hospital patient is vulnerable.

A judge was appointed to investigate the three men in March 2011 and eight years later he dropped the rape allegations and replaced them with “consensual penetrative sex with a minor under the age of 15”.

“Non-protection” charges were dropped against four other men who witnessed one of the alleged rapes.

Julie attempted suicide in 2019 after hearing the results of the investigation.

Marjolaine Vignola, the victim’s lawyer, said: “Every stereotype about rape in this case is: The judges and the psychiatrist say Julie is a liar, she consented to sex with all these men and she was lying because she was raped. ” She is ashamed.”

The maximum sentence for sexual offense in France is seven years, compared to 20 years for rape.

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