An Indonesian woman who was brutally gang-raped as a punishment for having an affair with a married man could be caned in public for breaking religious laws.
The unnamed widow was allegedly attacked last week when a gang of eight men broke into her home, tied her and her male companion up and accused the pair of conducting an illegal sexual relationship.
The woman, 25, was then raped by each of the men, who covered her and the man in sewage waste after the attack in Banda Aceh, the Jakarta Globe has reported.
They were then handed over to officials at the Sharia office, who discovered the woman had been assaulted during interogation.
Officials there have said the sexual assault would not be taken into consideration in determining the punishment for the religious crime that she was accused of committing.
Three of the attackers, including a 13-year-old boy, have been arrested so far by police, who are working to locate the five others.
“We want the couple to be caned because they violated the religious bylaw on sexual relations,” Ibrahim Latif, the head of the Sharia office in the eastern town of Langsa, told the Globe.
“They have to be [caned] as a form of justice because the rapists will also be processed, but in a criminal court,” he added. “Besides, they’ve confessed to having sex on several previous occasions, even though the man is married and has five children.”
Langsa Police chief Adj. Sr. Comr. Hariadi and the chief of detectives Adj. Comr. M. Firdaus have not yet commented on the issue.
Under the partial Sharia exercised in Aceh, the couple face up to nine strokes of the cane if the proposed punishment goes forward.