The Supreme Court of Sweden (Hosta Domstolen) ruled that unless there was additional supporting evidence the claim by a woman that she had been raped is not sufficient evidence that a rape occurred. The Court overturned a 2008 conviction on ground the testimony of the alleged victim could not be given more weight that that of the accused rapist if there is nothing else indicating that one of them is more credible than the other. A woman claimed a man threatened her at knife point and forced her to have sex with him in the apartment of the man’s friend. The friend was asleep in his bedroom when the man and woman had sex in the bathroom. The alleged rapist then asked his friend to leave at which point the couple had sex in the bed. The friend said he never heard any screams or something to indicate that a rape was taking place.
At the heart of this debate is whether a woman’s claim to having been raped is to be taken more seriously than the denial of the alleged rapist. In the real world, rape often is difficult to prove, particularly when it occurs between two people who know one another and have been dating. Obviously, the issue also deals with individual rights. Perhaps, in the real world there are times when it is simply too complex to uncover the truth about rape.