A Finnish court on Tuesday jailed five members of Cuba’s national volleyball team for gang raping a woman during a Volleyball World League championship in July and filming the attack.
According to the charge sheet, four of the players subjected the woman, whose identity was not revealed, to an hour-and-a-half ordeal which they filmed and photographed.
These four, team captain Rolando Cepeda Abreu (27), Abrahan Alfonso Gavilan (21), Ricardo Calvo Manzano (19) and Osmany Uriarte Mestre (21) received five-year prison sentences for aggravated rape.
A fifth player, Luis Sosa Sierra (21), received a shorter sentence of three years and six months, while the court acquitted a sixth teammate, Dariel Albo Miranda (24).
The Pirkanmaa district court in southern Finland ruled the woman had met some of the players at a basement nightclub in the hotel where the Cuban team was staying during the tournament in Tampere on the night of July 2.
She later agreed to go upstairs to Uriarte Mestre’s room and the two had sex, at first with her consent.
But Uriarte Mestre then invited Calvo Manzano – followed by his other teammates – to the room without her consent, the court found.
According to the prosecutor, Uriarte Mestre, Calvo Manzano, Cepeda Abreu and Alfonso Gavilan “had together and in mutual understanding forced (the victim) to several acts of sexual intercourse by means of violence and by taking advantage of (her) fear and state of helplessness.”
The charge sheet said the men pulled her by her hair and held her by her neck, among other things, to stop her from leaving the room, while she screamed for them to stop.
The prosecutor said the victim’s ordeal lasted two and a half hours, but the court found the hotel’s video monitoring system showed the events took place within an hour and a half.
The players had denied the charges, saying the sex had been consensual.
The court handed Sosa Sierra a shorter sentence than the others because he raped her in another hotel room, without the others present.