Rio de Janeiro police arrest 2 men in gang-rape case

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Brazillian Teen Speaks Out About Alleged Gang Rape

RIO DE JANEIRO, May 30 (Reuters) - Police in Rio de Janeiro said on Monday they are certain a 16-year-old girl was gang raped earlier this month, but added that it will be hard to prove her allegation that she was assaulted by more than 30 men.

Two suspects in the case were placed in custody on Monday, authorities said. Arrest warrants are pending for four others.

In the clip, the semi-conscious naked girl is seen on a bed as men hurl insults and boast that 30 people had raped her. At one point, a man is seen touching her genitals.

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"I am convinced there was a rape, it's right there in the video, when the guy touched the girl," lead investigator Cristiana Bento said in a news conference.

"The rape is proven," Bento said. "What I want to do now is verify the extent of this rape and how many people took part."

Her remark was the first time police have definitively stated the girl, who has not been identified, was raped. Previously, they had said there were all indications that a rape had occurred but that they needed more proof.

Authorities said a medical exam of the victim was only performed five days after the incident, hindering their ability to gather physical evidence that would lead to additional suspects and arrests.

The teen spoke with TV Record in Brazil about the horrifying incident, saying "There were several people laughing at me. I was drugged, I was very groggy, there were lots of people with guns, lots of young guys laughing and talking."

See the protests in the aftermath of the alleged attack:

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Protestors in Brazil after gang rape
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Rio de Janeiro police arrest 2 men in gang-rape case
Demonstrators protest on the Esplanade of Ministries in Brasilia on May 29, 2016, against the recent gang-rape of a 16-year-old girl. Brazilian police are investigating the gang-rape of a 16-year-old girl, whose attackers posted an online video and photos that triggered global outrage, showing her naked on a bed and the alleged rapists bragging that she had been raped by more than 30 men. / AFP / EVARISTO SA (Photo credit should read EVARISTO SA/AFP/Getty Images)
Brazilians protest in front of the Legislative Assembly of Rio de Janeiro (ALERJ) on May 27, 2016, against a gang-rape of a 16-year-old girl. Brazilian police on Friday were investigating the gang-rape of a 16-year-old girl whose attackers boasted about it by posting an online video of her that has horrified the country. Online social networks erupted with outrage over the video posted on Wednesday featuring the girl naked on a bed and the apparent rapists bragging that she had been raped by more than 30 men. / AFP / VANDERLEI ALMEIDA (Photo credit should read VANDERLEI ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images)
Brazilians protest in front of the Legislative Assembly of Rio de Janeiro (ALERJ) on May 27, 2016, against a gang-rape of a 16-year-old girl. Brazilian police on Friday were investigating the gang-rape of a 16-year-old girl whose attackers boasted about it by posting an online video of her that has horrified the country. Online social networks erupted with outrage over the video posted on Wednesday featuring the girl naked on a bed and the apparent rapists bragging that she had been raped by more than 30 men. / AFP / VANDERLEI ALMEIDA (Photo credit should read VANDERLEI ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images)
Brazilians protest in front of the Legislative Assembly of Rio de Janeiro (ALERJ) on May 27, 2016, against a gang-rape of a 16-year-old girl. Brazilian police on Friday were investigating the gang-rape of a 16-year-old girl whose attackers boasted about it by posting an online video of her that has horrified the country. Online social networks erupted with outrage over the video posted on Wednesday featuring the girl naked on a bed and the apparent rapists bragging that she had been raped by more than 30 men. / AFP / VANDERLEI ALMEIDA (Photo credit should read VANDERLEI ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images)
Brazilians protest outside the Supreme Court in Brasilia on May 29, 2016, against the recent gang-rape of a 16-year-old girl. Brazilian police are investigating the gang-rape of a 16-year-old girl, whose attackers posted an online video and photos that triggered global outrage, showing her naked on a bed and the alleged rapists bragging that she had been raped by more than 30 men. / AFP / EVARISTO SA (Photo credit should read EVARISTO SA/AFP/Getty Images)
Brazilians protest in front of the Legislative Assembly of Rio de Janeiro (ALERJ) on May 27, 2016, against a gang-rape of a 16-year-old girl. Brazilian police on Friday were investigating the gang-rape of a 16-year-old girl whose attackers boasted about it by posting an online video of her that has horrified the country. Online social networks erupted with outrage over the video posted on Wednesday featuring the girl naked on a bed and the apparent rapists bragging that she had been raped by more than 30 men. / AFP / VANDERLEI ALMEIDA (Photo credit should read VANDERLEI ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images)
Brazilians protest outside the Supreme Court in Brasilia on May 29, 2016, against the recent gang-rape of a 16-year-old girl. Brazilian police are investigating the gang-rape of a 16-year-old girl, whose attackers posted an online video and photos that triggered global outrage, showing her naked on a bed and the alleged rapists bragging that she had been raped by more than 30 men. / AFP / EVARISTO SA (Photo credit should read EVARISTO SA/AFP/Getty Images)
Brazilians protest in front of the Legislative Assembly of Rio de Janeiro (ALERJ) on May 27, 2016, against a gang-rape of a 16-year-old girl. Brazilian police on Friday were investigating the gang-rape of a 16-year-old girl whose attackers boasted about it by posting an online video of her that has horrified the country. Online social networks erupted with outrage over the video posted on Wednesday featuring the girl naked on a bed and the apparent rapists bragging that she had been raped by more than 30 men. / AFP / VANDERLEI ALMEIDA (Photo credit should read VANDERLEI ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images)
In this May 27, 2016 photo, a woman shouts holding a banner that reads in Portuguese "We're all bleeding" as she protests the gang rape of a 16-year-old girl in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The assault last Saturday came to light after several men joked about the attack online, posting graphic photos and videos of the unconscious, naked teen on Twitter. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)
A woman wearing a female gender symbol attends a protest against the gang rape of a 16-year-old girl in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, May 27, 2016. The assault last Saturday came to light after several men joked about the attack online, posting graphic photos and videos of the unconscious, naked teen on Twitter. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)
Demonstrators protest the gang rape of a 16-year-old girl in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, May 27, 2016. The assault last Saturday came to light after several men joked about the attack online, posting graphic photos and videos of the unconscious, naked teen on Twitter. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)
Rai de Souza, 22, a gang rape suspect is escorted by officers as he leaves a police station to be transferred to the police headquarters in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Monday, May 30, 2016. Police are searching for the more than 30 men suspected in the gang rape of a 16-year-old girl, a case that has rocked Latin America's largest nation and highlighted its endemic problem of violence against women. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)
Rai de Souza (L), 22, suspected of being involved in the gang rape of a teenage girl, with a video of the assault circulated widely on social media, is escorted at the Police Station for crimes against minors in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, May 30, 2016. REUTERS/Ricardo Moraes
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The alleged attack came to light after a video of the May 21 incident was posted to Twitter almost a week ago, shocking Brazilians.

"In the first moment, I didn't even want to tell my mom. Now I am sure that if I was going through this alone it would be much worse." the victim said. "I knew there would be no justice, that I would be ashamed. If I have to wait for the justice system, they've already shown that nothing is going to happen. I am waiting for the justice of God. That might be late but it never fails."

DRUG GANG

The case has sparked a debate over sexism and violence in Brazil and raised security concerns ahead of Rio's hosting of the Summer Olympics in August. Crime has fallen in recent years in Rio, though there has been a recent increase in homicides.

The video, which was posted by one of the suspects, was widely shared across social media, prompting widespread outrage and igniting protests in several cities that continued Monday.

Some people, however, have focused their blame on the girl, with Bento noting that "she is being victimized by people judging her because she may have dressed in a certain way."

Protesters chanted "there was no rape" and held placards stating the same thing during a small demonstration at a bus stop near the western Rio slum where the girl said the gang rape occurred.

Police scattered the crowd with pepper spray.

The O Globo newspaper posted on its website an audio sent via the Whatsapp messaging service in which an alleged member of the drug gang that controls the slum is heard ordering residents to attend the demonstration.

Bento, the investigator, said she is certain drug gang members were involved in raping the girl. She noted that police have an arrest warrant for Sergio Silva, the local head of the Red Command gang in the slum.

One suspect, 22-year-old Rai Souza, turned himself into police on Monday, authorities said. A second, 20-year-old local professional soccer player Lucas Perdomo, was arrested.

The girl at the center of the case is now under state protection and she and her family intend to leave Rio, officials said.

Brazil's Justice Minister Alexandre Moraes, visiting Rio for a meeting about Olympic security, said he would put the girl and her family in the federal government's witness protection program, should they want it.

(Additional reporting by Rodrigo Viga Gaier; Editing by Paul Simao; Additional reporting by AOL.com)

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