Paratroopers on tour in America face trial for rape By Philip Sherwell in Washington (Filed: 31/07/2005) Two British paratroopers have been charged with raping a young American woman in the garden of her home in Wyoming where their Territorial Army battalion is taking part in a training exercise. The soldiers, identified in legal papers as Scott Aitken and Andrew Leighton, were charged with first-degree sexual assault when they appeared in court in the small farming town of Wheatland in Platte County on Thursday. The offence carries a sentence of between five and 50 years in prison. The men were released on bail into the custody of British and American military authorities and have been confined to base at Camp Guernsey, the Wyoming Army National Guard training facility, 75 miles north of the state capital Cheyenne. The alleged victim, a 24-year-old local woman, gave a graphic account of her version of events in an interview with the local newspaper, the Casper Star-Tribune. Contempt laws are much looser in America and allow media to run such coverage. The woman, whose identity has not been released, said that she was out on Tuesday night in a bar in Guernsey with friends when the two soldiers asked to talk to her outside. She had met them the previous Friday and thought they were "respectful, very nice guys". The two walked her to her nearby garden where, the woman claimed, one of the men suggested a "threesome". She said: "When I said, 'No way', that's when it all started." She says that she is concerned that the men are still being held at nearby Camp Guernsey. Eric Alden, the Platte County Attorney, said: "She has every reason to be concerned and upset if what she said is true." The accused are serving with 4 Para. The Territorial Army's only parachute regiment battalion is being hosted by the Nebraska National Guard Airborne Battalion at Camp Guernsey. A British embassy spokesman said: "We can confirm that two soldiers have been arrested in the US in connection with alleged sexual misconduct. "The US civilian police authorities are leading the investigation and UK authorities are providing them with every assistance."