An Irish court has fined a man $2,731 (€2,000) in the country’s first convicted “Facebook rape” or “Frape” case after he took a woman’s phone and used it to post sexually abusive status updates on her Facebook page.
Prosecutors based their case on Ireland’s Criminal Damage Act of 1991, which is punishable up to a maximum 10-year prison sentence according to the Independent. Similar laws have been proposed and enacted in the U.S. and U.K., including legislation banning “revenge porn” — posting intimate pictures online of past relationship partners without the other party’s consent.
The 30-year-old man from Donegal went to confront his ex-girlfriend about a perceived infidelity while intoxicated on April 6, 2011 and left their meeting place with her cellphone. After reading text messages confirming the woman’s new relationship, the man logged into the woman’s Facebook account on her phone and posted a status update saying that she was a “whore” who would take “any offers.”
After spotting the posts the woman quickly deleted them. The man reportedly incriminated himself during the course of a police investigation and plead guilty. Neither party was named for legal reasons.
The man was acquitted of actual rape and imprisonment charges.