4 Teenagers Accused Of Raping A Woman In Kuna
Four teenagers are accused of raping an 18-year-old in Kuna earlier this month. Judge Robert Comstock has set bail at $250,000 for the three Boise men. A juvenile boy is also accused of the same crime.
The three men, 18-year-olds Swedi Iyombelo and Mulanga Rashidi, and 19-year-old Elias Lupango, are all refugees from Tanzania, according to Comstock.
During an arraignment hearing Friday, prosecutors say the woman agreed to meet up with Iombello. But the Ada County Sheriff’s Office says three other teenagers showed up to the car they were in.
She initially had consensual sex with Iombello, according to prosecutors, but says she eventually repeatedly told him to stop. Afterwards, prosecutors say the others took turns raping her while she feared for her life.
The men denied the charges over a video feed, saying through an interpreter that they aren’t true.
Each of them will be assigned a public defender.
A defense attorney at the hearing says the men contend they were going to pay the victim for sex and that “there’s more to the story” than has been presented.
Prosecutors say the victim and the four teenagers exchanged messages afterwards where she told them “that they abused her and that it was never okay.” They sent back a video message apologizing for the incident, according to prosecutors.
Iombello and Lupongo have been in the area for three years, while Rishidi arrived about five months ago, according to Comstock.
Lupongo was arrested last March for allegedly stealing a pair of shoes and a hat from a local Walmart. He eventually pled guilty.
But a judge then dismissed the sentence after he completed probation, after Lupongo filed a request after expressing “…lingering concerns about immigration consequences” since he had pled guilty within five years of applying to be a naturalized citizen, according to court records.
Preliminary hearings for all three men are set for Feb. 27. All face the possibility of life in prison for felony rape charges.
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