The Northern Irish Police, the PSNI are investigating after a 17-year-old boy from Belfast posted a story on Facebook boasting about allegedly raping a young woman. The post on the Facebook page, called 'Holyland Lad,' received 1,226 "likes."
According to the Belfast Telegraph, the post, which was put on the site five weeks ago, claims that a teenager from Coalisland, Co Tyrone, had sex with the woman in a house in Cairo Street after misleading her about his identity. She thought the teenager was his older brother and he did not correct her until after they had intercourse.
The post sparked a debate as to whether the intercourse could be considered rape and many derogatory comments were made about the alleged victim. The male was described as a "legend."
The post was reported to the PSNI by solicitor Padraigin Drinan who works for the Rape Crisis Centre.
"It may be a fictitious account of a rape or a real rape. This is now a matter for the PSNI to investigate," said Ms Drinan.
"What is horrifying is that over 1,000 students think this incident is funny. It's sickening to think that someone boasts on Facebook of a horrific crime, real or imaginary, and so many educated young people then cheer him on."
According to Drinan, rape by deception is a crime in which the perpetrator gains the victim's sexual consent and compliance through deception or fraudulent statements or actions.
"Usually it happens when the woman has consumed too much alcohol and the man pretends to be someone else," she said. "But make no mistake about it, the legislation is clear on this.
"Section 10 of the 2008 sexual offences order Northern Ireland states that consent is deemed not to be given if the defendant impersonates a person known to the complainant. There is no grey area. If a woman has sex with her boyfriend's brother in darkness, when he has led her to believe he is actually his brother, then the crime of rape has been committed."
A police spokesman said the PSNI had spoken to several males in relation to the alleged rape reported on the Facebook page.
"Police haven't been able to ascertain a victim. If anyone has information they should come forward," he added.
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