Cut in compensation for rape victims who had been drinking

Fourteen rape victims who were drinking alcohol before they were attacked have had their compensation cut in the past year. A clause says payments can be reduced if alcohol consumption "gave rise to the injury".

One woman, who was raped four years ago after her drink was spiked, overturned a decision by the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority to award her a reduced amount. It was 25 per cent lower than the standard award of £11,000 because "the evidence shows that your excessive consumption of alcohol was a contributing factor".

The Justice minister Bridget Prentice said: "It is not policy to reduce the level of award to a victim of rape due to alcohol consumption. It is never an individual's fault if he/she gets raped."