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Two former soldiers deny raping colleague at barracks

A military court in Wiltshire has heard claims that an army corporal was raped by two comrades after a night out drinking in Germany.

Anne-Marie Ellement, who was 30, was found dead at Bulford Barracks two years later. The two corporals, who have since left the army, both deny rape.

From Bulford, Martin Dowse reports.


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Anne-Marie Ellement's family 'delighted' by verdict

Anne-Marie Ellement's sister Sharon Hardy has read out a statement to the media, on behalf of the family.

She said: "The family are delighted with this verdict we have today.

"The coroner has confirmed what we have always known - that Anne-Marie was treated appallingly and let down by the Army.

Anne-Marie Ellement's sister Sharon Hardy reads a statement to the media. Credit: ITV News

"She was never able to recover from the allegation of rape she made in Germany.

"She then suffered bullying by the Army and was subjected to unacceptable work practices.

"Victims of sexual abuse in the Army need proper support, which the coroner has recognised, and we are delighted with his recommendations."

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Army 'deeply regrets' death of Corporal Ellement

The Army deeply regrets the tragic death of Corporal Anne-Marie Ellement and although there were aspects of her care that were praised, I want to apologise to her family for the failures that the Coroner has identified. This second inquest has been an extremely thorough investigation by Her Majesty's Coroner, and Anne-Marie's family has shown great dignity throughout. We now have a clear understanding of the complex circumstances surrounding her death and, where the Army needs to learn lessons.

Our priority is to study the Coroner's conclusions and then identify what further steps can be taken, to help prevent a recurrence of this kind of tragedy in the future. At present, however, our thoughts and sympathy lie with Anne-Marie's family at this difficult time.

– Brigadier John Donnelly, Director of Personal Services

Coroner calls for MOD to review care for vulnerable soldiers

A coroner has called on the Ministry of Defence to review its care for vulnerable soldiers after he ruled that bullying, the "lingering" mental effects of an alleged rape, "work-related despair" and a romantic break-up were all factors in the death of Anne-Marie Ellement.

Nicholas Rheinberg concluded that she hanged herself at Bulford Barracks in Wiltshire two years after she alleged that two soldiers raped her while she was stationed in Germany.

But Mr Rheinberg said in the inquest that, although the care given to Corporal Ellement in the aftermath of the allegation had been of "high quality", the transfer of information when she returned to the UK had been "unforgivably bad."

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Bullying among factors in death of Corporal Ellement

Corporal Anne-Marie Ellement. Credit: Family handout.

Bullying, the "lingering" mental effects of an alleged rape, "work-related despair" and a romantic break-up were all factors in the death of Corporal Anne-Marie Ellement who committed suicide in an Army barracks, coroner Nicholas Rheinberg has ruled at a Salisbury inquest.

Corporal Ellement, 30, was found dead at Bulford Barracks near Salisbury in Wiltshire on October 9, 2011.


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Family 'devastated' by Ellement inquest adjournment

Kirsten Heaven, who represents Cpl Ellement's two sisters, told the inquest: "The family are devastated and upset this disclosure has come so late in the day."

Khristina Swain (left), sister of Corporal Anne-Marie Ellement and her mother Alexandra Barritt (centre) speak to reporters. Credit: Press Association

Adjourning proceedings until Monday morning, the coroner said there was a "danger" in pursuing information which was "unrealistic to find" and which may be of little relevance to the inquest.

"I suggest all urgency is given to track down any missing documents," Mr Rheinberg said.

"I'm going to grant the application (for adjournment) on strict and immediate terms."

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Ministry of Defence denies Ellement inquest 'cover-up'

The Ministry of Defence has denied a "cover-up" after an inquest was adjourned into the death of Royal Marine Police officer found hanging in her barracks after she accused two soldiers of rape.

Corporal Anne-Marie Ellement, 30, was found dead at Bulford Barracks near Salisbury in Wiltshire on October 9, 2011.

Corporal Anne-Mare Ellement was found hanged two years after accusing colleagues of raping her. Credit: Family handout.

She alleged she had been raped by two soldiers in November 2009, but had been left "absolutely devastated" by the decision taken by military investigators not to prosecute them, an inquest in Salisbury heard.

The coroner was expected to deliver his conclusion into Cpl Ellement's death today. But the hearing was adjourned after the court heard an inventory listing items including three mobile phones and a pink diary found in Cpl Ellement's room had been discovered by the MoD.

However the items have not been found and it is thought they may have been handed to Cpl Ellement's father, who has not been located, the inquest heard.

More than 1,400 files, including 29 which were deemed relevant to the inquest by the MoD, would now be disclosed to Cpl Ellement's family for the first time, the inquest heard.

Nicholas Moss, representing the MoD, said there was "no evidence of a cover-up".

"The MoD has gone to exceptional lengths to seek to provide as fullest disclosure as possible," he said.

Inquest into soldiers death to finish today

The coroner is expected to deliver his conclusion today at the inquest of a soldier found hanged at her barracks in Wiltshire.

Corporal Anne-Marie Ellement died at Bulford in October 2011 after claiming she had been sexually assaulted by two colleagues.

Her family claim she was being bullied by other soldiers.

Anne-Marie Ellement was found hanged at her barracks in Wiltshire Credit: ITV Meridian
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