Three charged in historic gang rape case
THREE men will face a Brisbane court after being charged over the historic rape of a Queensland woman on her 21st birthday in 1995.
The victim, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was allegedly attacked by a group of men at a Brisbane apartment in the early hours of the morning.
The woman has spent years fighting for justice, and earlier this year spoke to the ABC about her ordeal, which prompted State Opposition Leader Deb Frecklington to get involved.
A Queensland police spokesman tonight confirmed three men had been arrested, including two that had been extradited.
"As a result of a protracted investigation conducted by the Sexual Crime Unit and State Crime Command into a 1995 cold case sexual assault complaint, two male persons aged 53 and 43 were arrested and extradited from Adelaide and Sydney respectively," he said.
"Another 47-year-old Brisbane male has been charged for sexual assault offences for this matter."
All three men are scheduled to face Brisbane Magistrates Court on Wednesday.
An ABC investigation from earlier this year revealed police had told the alleged victim that potential evidence including her dress, underwear and rape kit had been destroyed, according to secret recording and emails she obtained after pressing police to reopen the investigation.
The revelation prompted a call from Ms Frecklington for the Crime and Corruption Commission to launch an independent investigation into the alleged gang rape.
The alleged victim told the ABC she was angry it took over two decades for arrests to be made.
"I'm angry I had to fight and keep pushing the police for them to just look at the case, for them to finally arrest somebody," she said.
In tapes obtained by the ABC from the alleged victim, which she said she secretly made of a meeting with a detective in November 2018, police admit evidence in a number of cases had been destroyed.
"I know there was a process … probably within the last two or three years where there were things that were destroyed," the detective allegedly said on the recording.
In the letter she co-signed to the CCC, Ms Frecklington said she was "appalled" at the conduct of the officers involved in the initial handling of the case.
"The actions of the officers involved have jeopardised the prospects of identifying and prosecuting all offenders involved, and consequently, the victim has been denied access to justice," Ms Frecklington said in her letter.
Ms Frecklington also said in her letter that the officers involved only dedicated three days to the initial investigation.
Investigations into the cold case are continuing.