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article imageSpanish mother sets daughter's rapist on fire

By Chris V. Thangham     Feb 25, 2009 in World
A Spanish mother got upset with the man who raped her 13-year-old daughter after he provoked her by asking how her daughter was. She doused him in petrol and set him on fire and he died 11 days later.
Antonio Cosme Velasco Soriano, 69, was sent to jail for 13 years in 1998 after the raping incident. He was released from jail in June of 2008 after an appeal.
Once free, he returned to his home town of Benejúzar, 30 miles south of Alicante, on the Costa Blanca in Spain.
Then, a 13-year-old girl was on her way to buy a loaf of bread for the family when Soriano picked her up from the street and threatened her with a knife. He later raped her.
Her mother has been suffering from mental illness since that incident.
When Soriano returned home, he went to a local bar and encountered the girl’s mother on the way. As they passed each other, he shouted “How’s your daughter?” before he went inside the crowded bar.
The taunting made the woman snap and she went inside the bar with a bottle of gasoline. She poured it on Soriano and before anyone could do anything, she set him on fire and walked out.
The patrons put out the fire, but Soriano suffered serious injuries. They took him to a local hospital but he died as a result of his burn injuries soon after.
The police arrested the woman the same evening. When she was taken to court in the town of Orihuela, the crowd cheered and shouted “Bravo!” and “Well done!”
The judge ordered her to be held in prison and undergo psychiatric tests. Her friends and neighbors are upset and they have started a petition to release her from prison.
The woman's lawyer, Joaquín Galant, told The Sunday Telegraph last night:
"The family has suffered a double tragedy. First the attack on their daughter and now this. Both the father and his daughter would like to express their sadness at the death of Soriano."
Galant wants the judge to release her from prison. He said she has already suffered enough after the raping incident of her daughter:
"For seven years she has been deeply affected by what was done to her daughter...This man, fresh from prison and asking how her daughter was, might be considered to have provoked her."
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