Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

BUSINESS DAILY

US tops list of most competitive economies

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

South African musician Bongeziwe Mabandla on his 'urban African folk'

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Reshuffle and a televised act of contrition for Macron

Read more

THE DEBATE

Macron malaise: Can the French president reverse his plummeting popularity?

Read more

ENCORE!

Ryan Gosling and Claire Foy on the red carpet in Paris

Read more

PERSPECTIVE

The dictator hunter: Reed Brody on bringing despots to justice

Read more

FOCUS

France explores alternatives to prison

Read more

IN THE PRESS

Blind support or strategic move? Australia mulls embassy move to Jerusalem

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

'Personal computing would not have existed without him': Paul Allen dies aged 65

Read more

Europe

Frenchman at centre of Nobel Prize scandal charged with rape

© Jonas Ekstromer, TT NEWS AGENCY, AFP | Swedish Academy member Katarina Frostenson and her husband Jean-Claude Arnault at the Royal Palace in Stockholm, December 11, 2001.

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2018-06-12

A French culture figure at the centre of a scandal that splintered the Swedish Academy which awards the Nobel Literature Prize has been charged with two counts of rape, Stockholm prosecutors said on Tuesday.

Jean-Claude Arnault, who is married to a member of the Swedish Academy and is accused of sexual assault by 18 women, has been charged with raping a woman in Stockholm on two occasions in 2011.

He has denied the allegations.

"The evidence in this case is solid and sufficient enough for an indictment," prosecutor Christina Voigt told AFP, referring to indirect witness accounts that corroborate the victim's version of events.

No date has been set for the trial.

According to the charge sheet, a copy of which was obtained by AFP, Arnault, 71, allegedly forced the victim - who was in a state of "intense fear" - to have oral sex and intercourse in a Stockholm apartment on October 5, 2011.

He is also accused of raping her during the night of December 2-3 while she was asleep.

In November, in the wake of the global #MeToo movement, Sweden's newspaper of reference Dagens Nyheter published the testimonies of 18 women claiming to have been raped, sexually assaulted or harassed by Arnault.

Married to Academy member and poet Katarina Frostenson, Arnault has denied the allegations, but the Academy severed all ties to him and his cultural centre Forum which it had subsidised for years.

Disagreements within the Academy on how to deal with the issue sowed deep discord among its 18 members.

Six members quit, leaving the venerable Academy in disarray and without enough members to elect new members, according to its statutes.

In May, the Academy said it would not announce a Nobel Literature Prize this year - a first in almost 70 years -- because of the crisis.

'Relieved '  

The prosecution had opened an investigation based on the claims against Arnault published in Dagens Nyheter. In mid-March, it announced that it had dropped parts of the investigation concerning rape and sexual assault in 2013 and 2015 due to lack of evidence and the statute of limitations.

In an email to AFP, the lawyer representing the plaintiff said her client was "relieved and satisfied by the indictment".

"My client has been deeply affected by these events, she has been offended and humiliated in a particularly serious fashion," said Elisabeth Massi Fritz.

Arnault's lawyer, Bjorn Hurtig, did not immediately respond to AFP's request for comment.

(AFP)

Date created : 2018-06-12

  • NOBEL PRIZE

    Swedish Academy postpones 2018 Nobel literature prize over sex abuse allegations

    Read more

  • NOBEL PRIZE

    Head of Nobel Prize’s Swedish Academy quits over sex abuse scandal

    Read more

COMMENT(S)