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Outrage as teenager jailed for 30 years after giving birth to her rapist's 'stillborn baby'

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Prosecutors claimed Evelyn Beatriz Hernandez Cruz, 19, did not want the baby and had thrown the boy into a septic tank at a farmhouse north of El Salvador\'s capital.

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11th-Jul-2017       
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Daily Mail :
A teenage rape victim has been jailed for 30 years after the baby she had by her attacker failed to survive, it has emerged.
Prosecutors claimed Evelyn Beatriz Hernandez Cruz, 19, did not want the baby and had thrown the boy into a septic tank at a farmhouse north of El Salvador's capital.
When she was admitted to hospital after the birth on April 6 last year, staff alerted police who questioned the teenager and later found the body, a court heard.
A judge has since convicted Cruz of aggravated homicide - despite her lawyers claiming that she had she had infact suffered a stillbirth due to pregnancy complications.
Abortion has been criminalised in all circumstances in El Salvador since 1998.
Campaigners, who claim the teenager had been raped by a gang member before falling pregnant, have been left outraged by the sentence, which is due to be appealed.
According to local reports, the baby was born prematurely at 32 weeks and lawyers representing Cruz say she only gave birth out of hospital because she did not know she was pregnant.
In court, they claimed that medical experts had found meconium, the baby's first stool, in the child's airways which may have been fatal.
However, a judge ruled in favour of the prosecution and Cruz has been jailed for 30 years.
Amnesty said the teenager was admitted to a health centre in Cojutepeque, 25 miles north of the capital San Salvador, on April 6 last year after she fainted at home.  
Amnesty claim she was in labour but unaware she was pregnant. Local organisations claimed she had been raped months earlier but that she had been too afraid to report it to the police.
ElSalvador.com reported that the high school student claimed to have given birth in a toilet having thought she was suffering stomach pains.
Amnesty said of the sentencing: 'El Salvador's anti-abortion law is causing nothing but pain and suffering to countless women and girls and their families. It goes against human rights and it has no place in the country or anywhere.
'The total ban on abortion in El Salvador violates women's rights to life, health, privacy, due process and freedom from discrimination, violence and torture and other ill-treatment.
'All women and girls imprisoned for having had an abortion or experiencing obstetric emergencies should be immediately and unconditionally released, and the law must be repealed without delay.'

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