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Last Updated: Wednesday, 1 June, 2005, 11:11 GMT 12:11 UK
Swift sentence for Indian rapists
Two men have been sentenced to life imprisonment in India for raping a German tourist three weeks ago in one of the fastest trials in the country.

A special fast-track court in the western state of Rajasthan convicted the two men and handed out the sentence after a trial that lasted 16 days.

The victim left for Germany after identifying the two men in court.

She was raped by an auto-rickshaw driver and an accomplice near the city of Jodhpur.

Local villagers came to her aid and called the police.

On Wednesday, Judge Praveen Kumar Bhatnagar sentenced the two men and also fined them 5,000 rupees ($116) each, the Press Trust of India reported.

Diplomat rape

The trial is one of the fastest in India, where courts often take years to deliver a verdict.

Last month, a Delhi court handed out a life sentence to a man convicted of raping and seriously injuring a 22-year-old nurse in September 2003 at the hospital where they both worked.

Women's groups say India's poor rate of conviction and lengthy trial process deters many rape victims from coming forward to testify, especially because they fear social discrimination.

In October 2003, a Swiss diplomat was raped in Delhi. No one has been brought to trial over the case.

More recently, a Delhi college student was gang-raped last month in a case that received wide publicity.

One person has been arrested in that case but police are still trying to find two others alleged to have taken part.

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