Crying rape falsely: rare or common?
The founder of Wikileaks, Julian Assange, is claiming that a dirty tricks campaign lay behind the charges of rape and sexual assault laid against him by two Swedish women last week.
The rape charge has been dismissed as groundless by the Swedish authorities, who are still investigating the charge of sexual assault, The Times reports today (p 25). Mr Assange met the two women ten days ago. He denies the charges, but fears that they have damaged him and his organisation, which recently published 70,000 confidential frontline reports on the Afghan war, causing fury in the Pentagon.
Sweden has the highest rate of reported rape in the world, 46.5 cases per 100,000 people, almost twice that of England & Wales. But it also has a low conviction rate: around 10 per cent of cases reported in Sweden end in convictions. In general, there is a roughly inverse relationship between the reported rape in individual countries and the proportion of these reports that end in conviction.