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Trial Over High-Profile Deadly Rape Case Starts In Ukraine

Medics pull a trolley with 18-year-old Oksana Makar, who was raped, strangled, and burned alive, in a hospital in the city of Donetsk on March 19.
MYKOLAYIV, Ukraine -- The trial of three men charged in connection with the rape and eventual death of a teenage girl has gotten under way in the southern Ukrainian city of Mykolayiv.

Shortly after the trial began on June 12, Judge Olena Selivanova ruled that the proceedings will be held in open court, not behind closed doors, as initially planned by authorities.

Oksana Makar, 18, died in a hospital three weeks after she was raped, strangled and set on fire in March in Mykolayiv.

The case shocked many Ukrainians and sparked a number of protests after it was revealed that police initially released two of the suspects, whose parents were former regional government officials.

All three suspects were eventually arrested and charged with rape.

One faces an attempted murder charge.

With reporting by UNIAN