When an office party leads to rape 

In 2015, Margus Rahuoja organized an office party intended to thank the staff and simultaneously celebrate the birth of his daughter, it would end with him sexually assaulting a staff member 20 years his junior. 

Eliza Archer
Eliza Archer NewsMavens, Europe
When an office party leads to rape  - NewsMavens
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Why this story matters:

In 2015, Margus Rahuoja organized an office party. The party was intended to thank the staff and simultaneously celebrate the birth of his daughter.

According to Rahuoja, the party quickly “degenerated”, resulting in a sexual encounter between him and a staff member twenty years his junior. He said the act was consensual, while she said it was rape.

Just this week, Rahuoja was sentenced to 4 years in prison and ordered to pay the victim €30,000 in compensation as a Brussels court concluded there had been no consent given.

The court considered the fact that the victim was Rahuoja's junior, and therefore under his supervision in the workplace, at the time of the incident. 

Details from the story:

  • Margus Rohuoja was sentenced to four years in prison.
  • He was a director in the Directorate-General for Mobility and Transport of the Commission in 2015 when the incident took place.
  • The incident occurred at an office party that was intended to thank employees and celebrate the birth of Rahuoja’s daughter.
  • Rohuoja claimed that the act was consensual, however the court found that consent had not been given.
  • A European Commission spokesperson has said that Rohuoja was suspended when the incident was first reported but no further action could be taken until the verdict and court procedures had concluded. 
  • Alongside his prison sentence, Rohuoja must also pay the victim €30,000 in compensation and has had his civil rights suspended for 5 years.
  • Rohuoja plans to appeal the decision.
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