A court in Cyprus on Friday detained seven Israeli youths for further questioning in connection with a group rape alleged by a British tourist on the island.
A total of 12 Israeli teens aged between 16 and 18 years had initially been detained on a court order last week after the 19-year-old holidaymaker she had been raped in a hotel room in the resort of Ayia Napa.
Cypriot authorities released five of them late on Thursday. A magistrate ordered the remaining seven be held for another six days for questioning, a police spokeswoman said.
Israeli media have quoted parents of the youths denying the allegations.
Police documents stated the 19-year-old woman met one of the suspects three days prior to the alleged attack and had engaged in sexual relations with the teen on multiple occasions.
Earlier reports in the Cypriot media said the woman claimed the young men held her down and filmed the sexual assault while she screamed.
According to the reports, the woman was with one of the suspects at a party and had agreed to go to his hotel room at around 3am. The alleged victim claims that once inside, the 11 other teens entered the room and proceeded to rape her.
The five teens were released Thursday after DNA results ruled them out and in light of a lack of other evidence to back the rape victim's case.
One suspect said after his release that he doesn’t know if the rest of the detainees were guilty.
"I don’t know what they did, if they did anything. I know nothing," he said.
The teen thanked his friends in Israel for supporting him: "I appreciate all of them, they did a lot for me, " he said.
"This is the first sign of the cracks in the complainant's version," said attorney Nir Yaslovitz who represents some of the teens.
"The police accepted their version of events and they will soon come home," said Yaniv Havery, an attorney also representing some of the suspects.
The alleged victim is also still in Cyprus and gave another testimony on Tuesday.
The Cyprus police considers her version reliable, despite attempts to disqualify her version of events by different factors.