Hungary: Court Rules in Significant Rape Case

In a ruling that will encourage the punishment of violent crimes committed against women, the Budapest Metropolitan Court found Hungarian actor Roland Damu guilty of rape, attempted bodily harm, and violation of personal freedom.

The KERET Coalition (Coalition against Sexual Violence, for Survivors) and other similar organizations call attention to the significance of the court’s acknowledgement of circumstantial evidence and human rights standards, such as rejecting evidence that would have caused further trauma for the victim. But the Coalition points out that the court ignored documented evidence that Damu had previously committed violence against women.  

The Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence calls for violence against women to be penalized with dissuasive, proportionate sanctions and disagreed with the Budapest Metropolitan Court’s reduction of the original sentence, as it conveys that the court considers the accused act only a minimal danger to society.

The KERET Coalition, which provides assistance for victims of sexual violence, asserts that it is the role of the justice system to address and remedy the societal threat of domestic violence.

Compiled from:  Hungary: Women’s organisations comment on a high-profile rape case verdict, European Women’s Lobby, (2 April 2012).