Daughter celebrates as her rape-accused British father is freed

‘One of the best days of my life’: Daughter of rape-accused British father who was freed by Greek police after DNA proved he did NOT rape his own child says she can’t wait to give him a ‘big hug’

  • EXCLUSIVE: Tammi Forsythe, daughter of rape-accused British father, celebrating as he is ‘set to be released’
  • Philip Forsythe, 62, accused of raping his own daughter – 33-year-old Tammi – on island of Crete on June 9 
  • Mr Forsythe and his daughter have maintained throughout the investigation that he could not have done it 
  • DNA evidence has now proven that is the case, Greek media reports, meaning Mr Forsythe is free to go 
  • Tammi waived her right to anonymity to the MailOnline to hit out over police failings with the investigation 

The daughter of a rape-accused British father who was released from police custody after DNA evidence proved he did not carry out the attack is tonight celebrating the news and said she can’t wait to give him a ‘big hug’ again.

Tammi Forsythe – who waived her anonymity to MailOnline in order speak out about police failings in the case – told officers she had been attacked on an abandoned beach in the town of Malia, Greece, on June 9.

Detectives examined CCTV evidence from a bar where the 33-year-old had been drinking with father Philip, 62, the same night, then sensationally arrested him and accused him of carrying out the attack.

But DNA samples taken from Tammi as evidence do not match samples supplied by Mr Forsythe, according to Greek news site Protothema.

The stunning development – which Tammi insisted would turn out to be the case – means Mr Forsythe should be freed from jail and allowed to return to the UK.

Speaking to MailOnline today, mother-of-four Tammi described today as ‘one of the best days of my life’ and said the pair hope to leave the island of Crete ‘as quickly as possible’ after a whirlwind four weeks for her family.

‘The first thing I will do when I see my dad is give him a big hug,’ she said.

‘This is wonderful news, one of the best days of my life. I’ve spoken to him briefly on the phone but he then had to get his belongings together for his release.

Tammi Forsythe, 33 (left), told Greek police on the island of Crete she had been raped on June 9 – prompting them to arrest father Philip (together right) and sensationally accuse him of the crime 

Police were relying on CCTV from a local bar where Mr Forsythe, 62, had been drinking with his daughter before the attack (pictured), that showed the pair being physical with each-other

But DNA evidence collected from Tammi after the attack and supplied by Mr Forsythe has proved he did not commit the crime, Greek media reports, meaning he has been released from jail 

Tammi added: ‘Words cannot describe how happy we both are and that it’s finally over and we can get back home with the family.

‘Right at this time I need time to process everything and to spend time with my father.’

Tammi revealed that she was notified about her father being cleared by telephone but Greek police did not call her to tell her the good news.

She added: ‘When we are ready we will speak fully about what happened to save other British families from having to go through the horrendous injustice that we have suffered.’

Tammi and her father had maintained throughout the investigation that he could not have attacked her, and have slammed police over their handling of the case.

It is just the latest high-profile rape case involving a Briton to be bungled by Greek cops, after a woman who accused a group of men of gang-raping her in Cyprus in 2019 was herself arrested and prosecuted for wasting police time.

Tammi, a mother-of-four, previously told MailOnline: ‘It’s not an easy thing for me to come out publicly as a rape victim but the world needs to know how me, and my father are suffering.

‘He is 100% innocent, he did not rape me. The Greek police have treated us appallingly. 

‘As far as they are concerned, this is just a case of a drunken Brit on holiday who got raped. If we were Greek citizens, we would not have been treated like this.’

She added: ‘The police made up their minds from the start that my father was guilty and have not done anything about finding the real rapist. The time has come for me to speak out so that we can get justice.’

Mr Forsythe was arrested on June 11, two days after Tammi reported being raped while on a boozy night out with him along the main strip in the tourist town of Malia, which is lined with rowdy bars and night clubs popular with Brits.

He is currently being held in a prison in the city of Tripoli on the Greek mainland and is awaiting the results of DNA tests.

Mr Forsythe has denied committing the rape and has been told by Greek prosecutors that he will either face trial within 18 months or could be released depending on the outcome of the results. Under Greek law, he has only been informally charged with the crime.

Tammi, who lives with her father in Hull, revealed that she is still in Crete, where she has been speaking to him on the phone each day.

She cried: ‘I only get to speak to him for a few minutes. He’s in a terrible state psychologically and doesn’t understand why this has happened because he’s not done anything wrong.

‘My father suffers from diabetes and a number of other serious medical issues. He’s not eaten properly for five days and is close to having a breakdown. I’m really worried that this whole thing might kill him.’

Tammi revealed that she fears she might be pregnant following the attack. She is the mother of three sons, aged 12, 10 and five and a daughter, 15 and is separated from their father.

Tammi said: ‘This holiday has turned into a horror movie. I’m really suffering with stress and anxiety which has only got worse because I’m feeling a bit sick and have missed my period. I’m usually very regular and it’s not like me.

‘I’m 60% sure that I’m pregnant. I’ve been told by the British Consulate that I need to go to a medical clinic to have a blood test, but I’ve been suffering from such bad panic attacks that I need someone to accompany me. But I’m here on my own and have got nobody to help me.’

Tammi was on holiday with her father to celebrate his birthday and it was their first time abroad together following the lifting of Covid travel restrictions. They were due to return to the UK on June 19.

Referring to the DNA test, Tammi said: ‘We were promised that this would be a priority, but that’s not proved to be the case. I’ve not been given any information about when we will get the results. The Greek authorities just don’t seem to care. As far as they are concerned, they have got their man and my father can rot in prison.’

Tammi (pictured) revealed that she is still in Crete, where she has been speaking to her father on the phone each day

Tammi told MailOnline that her dream holiday to Crete (pictured) has turned into a nightmare and she is using up her family’s savings to stay there and support her father until she can  go home and finally see her own four children again  

Greek officials insist that they arrested Mr Forsythe after CCTV footage from the Help bar showed that he indulged in ‘inappropriate sexual activity’ with Tammi in the hours leading up to the attack.

The CCTV footage has been obtained by MailOnline and Tammi denies her father did anything wrong, hitting back: ‘I was drunk out of my head; I could barely move. He was just trying to get me up to take me back to the hotel and put me to bed.

‘I lashed out at him because I was so drunk and angry. At one stage, I think I bit his hand. That’s all the CCTV footage shows-a father trying to help his very drunk daughter. There was nothing sexual going on between us. It’s a disgusting and ridiculous thing to say.’

Recalling the night of the attack, Tammi revealed that she and her father arrived at the Help Bar along Malia’s main strip at around 1.30am on Thursday 9 June and left at around 4.55am. She spent most of the night drinking Sambuca shots while he downed pints.

Tammi admitted: ‘I was so drunk, I could barely stand up. Somehow, I managed to stagger out of the bar, but we continued to argue. I was angry because I just wanted to be left alone so that I could carry on sleeping.

‘We got outside and sat on a concrete wall. My father put his arms around me, but I pushed him away and told him to f*** off. I was so drunk I didn’t know what I was doing or saying. I just wanted him to leave me alone.’

After her father walked off to return to their hotel, Tammi revealed that she staggered along a road and stumbled into a dead-end alley, where she fell and was too drunk to get up.

She added: ‘It was around 7.15am and I saw a man standing over me. He grabbed me by my legs, dragged me into a bush and raped me. I was left stunned by the whole thing and after it happened, I could not move for about 15 minutes because I was too scared.’

She admitted that she was too inebriated to provide an adequate description of her attacker to Greek police and could not recall what he looked like apart from telling them that he was shorter than her and wore a white tee-shirt.

Following the attack, Tammi revealed that she returned to her hotel at around 8am, fell asleep for several hours and after waking, recalled the rape and rang the British Consulate in Crete, who told her immediately to report it to the police.

The Crete resort town of Malia (above) is a popular holiday destination with Brit tourists flocking to the island every summer 

She said: ‘I told the police the events of the night, where my father and I had been drinking and they took me there to retrace my steps.

‘I told them that I was very drunk, but they got it all wrong when they saw the CCTV footage. They completely misunderstood everything I was saying. I told them that my father was wearing all white, but they took that to mean that the attacker was wearing all white.

‘I was treated like a criminal not a victim and after suffering this horrendous crime, I’m suffering even more now because of what they’re doing to my father.’

Praising the British Consulate for their support, she said: ‘I don’t think I could have got through this without their help. They have been brilliant with me every step of the way. I cannot thank them enough.’

Tammi, who is a former nail technician but is currently out of work said that she is determined to stay in Greece until her father is free. One of four sisters, she described him as the ‘best dad in the world.’

She cried: ‘My dad’s very protective over his girls and we’re all very close to him. This was meant to be a lovely father and daughter holiday that’s turned into hell for us.’

Tammi estimates that she has already spent close to £4,000 as she remains in Crete waiting for the case to be resolved.

She added: ‘Luckily, my father’s got some savings, which I’ve been using. I’m not going back to Hull without him and will stay in Greece for as long as it takes.’

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