Police have launched an investigation after a 19-year-old woman gave birth to a baby that was fathered by her groom – a 13-year-old schoolboy.
The bride, identified as Bilana B., could face charges and a potential jail sentence of three to ten years for having sex with a child under the age of 14.
The couple ‘married’ after the boy persuaded the older teen to elope with him, and the boy has quit school to support his family financially.
The pair are gypsies and said their relationship is normal in their culture, but police said it is in breach of Russian law and have launched a criminal investigation.
In an interview with Russian media the boy said he persuaded his older bride to elope with him from her parents’ home in the south-western city of Stavropol.
He said he initiated the relationship after he got her telephone number from a relative and started chatting her up on his phone.
He said: “We were talking on the phone for less than two weeks, then I came to her place by car and she left with me.”
He is not old enough to drive so he had to persuade his grandparents to go there with him.
The couple have been living together at the boy’s grandparents’ home ever since.
They have a baby son named after the boy’s father, and said their relationship has been formalised in a gypsy wedding.
The boy’s grandmother said: “They didn’t have a real wedding, it was very simple. We did not have money. All they did was bring a couple of bottles of vodka.”
But she added that she accepted their relationship and could not throw them out of her house, adding: “This is our custom.”
The boy has had to leave school to support his family financially.
He said: “Currently I am in the seventh grade at school. I am working to get some money, but plan on returning to school when I can.”
His bride added: “(He) will be working, and I will be taking care of the family.”