French judge orders jail for Islamic scholar in rape cases

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A French judge has decided to keep prominent Islamic scholar Tariq Ramadan in detention, four days after he was charged with two alleged cases of rape by women who sought his counsel.

A judicial official, who wasn't authorized to speak publicly about the case, said Tuesday that the decision followed the recommendation of the prosecutor's office.

Ramadan had bought some time before the decision, saying last week after being charged that he wanted to postpone the required "debate" before any decision on remaining in jail.

The official said that Ramadan was placed under investigation for alleged rape in a 2009 encounter and the rape of a vulnerable person in a 2012 case. Both women filed the complaints last year.

Ramadan, in custody since Jan. 31, denies any wrongdoing.