Dutchman says DNA shows he's innocent in 2005 Spain rape case

According to the Spanish newspaper El Pais, the Dutchman Romano van der Dussen may have been wrongfully imprisoned in a Spanish cell for years.

In 2005 Van der Dussen was sentenced to 15 years in prison. According to the judge it was proven that the 30 year old man violently raped or attempted to rape several women in the resort of Fuengirola.

At that stage Van der Dussen had been living in Spain for some years and had come in contact with the police. When the women reported that they had been attacked by a white man, the police immediately thought of him. Van der Dussen testified that he was not in Fuengirola at the time of the attacks, but his alibi was difficult to check.

DNA found on the body of one of the victims did not match Van der Dussen. Despite this he was convicted, primarily based on the statements of two of the three victims. They pointed to him as their attacker, though they had given rather different descriptions of the rapist.

A few years ago it was discovered that the DNA found on the one victim matched that of a British man who was hung for the murder and rape of a woman. But as Van der Dussen was irrevocably convicted of the rape, the case was not reopened. The British man had been living in South-Spain at the time of the attacks.

A Spanish investigating judge has now reopened the case.