Australian prime minister stands by minister accused of rape

CANBERRA, Aurtralia (AP) — Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison is standing by an unidentified Cabinet minister after an anonymous letter was sent alleging the man had raped a 16-year-old girl more than 30 years ago. The letter sent to the prime minister’s office contained a statement from a woman who said she was raped in 1988. The woman has not been publicly identified and took her own life last year. Morrison said the minister denied the allegations. A Greens party senator says the minister must step down pending an independent investigation because the allegation lingers over the entire Cabinet and erodes the belief that the government takes sexual assault seriously.