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US woman indicted for livestreaming alleged rape of a 17-year-old

A woman used a social media app to livestream the alleged rape of a 17-year-old girl, an Ohio prosecutor said on Wednesday as a grand jury indicted the woman and a co-defendant on several charges including rape and kidnapping.

world Updated: Apr 15, 2016 07:00 IST
This photo provided by the Franklin County, Ohio, Sheriff's Office, shows Marina Lonina. A prosecutor has charged Lonina with using an app to livestream the alleged rape of a 17-year-old girl.
This photo provided by the Franklin County, Ohio, Sheriff's Office, shows Marina Lonina. A prosecutor has charged Lonina with using an app to livestream the alleged rape of a 17-year-old girl.(AP)

A woman used a social media app to livestream the alleged rape of a 17-year-old girl, an Ohio prosecutor said on Wednesday as a grand jury indicted the woman and a co-defendant on several charges including rape and kidnapping.

The case came to light when authorities were contacted after an out-of-state friend of the woman saw the images, Prosecutor Ron O’Brien said.

Marina Lonina, 18, and co-defendant Raymond Gates, 29, were charged with rape, kidnapping, sexual battery and pandering sexually-oriented matter involving a minor.

Lonina was also charged with illegal use of a minor in a nudity-oriented material or performance, related to the alleged use of the social media livestreaming app Periscope.

Periscope, an app for smartphones, uses a video function to allow users to stream events live.

O’Brien said Lonina and the victim, who were friends, were socialising with Gates at a home in Columbus on February 27 when Gates raped the 17-year-old girl. Lonina used the Periscope app to livestream the assault, O’Brien said.

Lonina had also taken a picture of the girl in the nude the night before at Lonina’s house, O’Brien said.

Gates is scheduled for arraignment Friday. Court records don’t list attorneys for either defendant to respond to the charges. They each face up to 40 years in prison, if convicted.

In February, a Florida woman received a six-month license suspension and 150 hours of community service after she streamed live video of herself driving drunk last year.