A German court on Thursday handed youth sentences to three 15-year-old boys for the gang-rape of a young woman in the city of Muelheim an der Ruhr in July 2019.
One of the boys received a custodial sentence of two years and six months.
The two others were each handed suspended sentences of 18 months, but they are to be detained for an initial four weeks.
All three boys were 14 at the time of the crime which shocked Germany in 2019.
None of those involved have been identified, and proceedings were held entirely behind closed doors.
The court found that one of the accused, along with a boy then aged 12, had convinced their victim, then aged 18, to join them in woodland.
All three were aware that there would be sexual activity.
When the other two defendants, along with another 12-year-old, joined them, the woman made clear she no longer wished to participate.
“The gang then forced sex on her, striking her in the process,’’ the court found.
The two 12-year-old boys did not face legal proceedings, as they cannot be held responsible under German law, a fact which at the time of the crime provoked intense debate across Germany.
Muelheim municipality has also sought to have the family of the main accused deported to Bulgaria, without success.
All five boys involved, the three accused and the two 12-year-old boys, hold Bulgarian nationality.
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