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Three more suspects arrested in connection to gang rape of 21-year-old woman


Three more suspects have been arrested for the alleged gang rape of a 21-year-old woman in Meloding, Free State. The victim was raped on three…

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Three more suspects have been arrested for the alleged gang rape of a 21-year-old woman in Meloding, Free State.

The victim was raped on three separate occasions – early December 2021, and twice in January this year – by 10 men.

According to the South African Police Service Saps (Saps), the victim was afraid to report the incident that took place. Until her boyfriend offered to accompany her to report the incident.

Three of ten suspects were then arrested, and appeared at the Virginia Magistrate’s Court on Thursday.

The suspects have been remanded in custody.

“The case was postponed till [next Thursday], 17 February 2022 for [their] bail application,” Free State Saps spokesperson, captain Stephen Thakeng said in a statement.

Thakeng also confirmed that more suspects were also arrested on the same day the three others’ case was postponed.

The additional three suspects will appear in Virginia Magistrate’s Court on Monday.

A manhunt has since been launched for the four remaining suspects.

Lejweleputswa district commissioner, major-general Lerato Molale has commended the residents of Meloding for assisting the police in theses arrests.

“We will work around the clock to arrest the remaining suspects. What was done to this woman is horrific, inhuman and thus we will never rest until the wheels of justice roll,” Mohale said.

20-month-old baby raped

Meanwhile, civil rights organisation Action Society is calling for the maximum punishment of a 27-year-old man that allegedly raped his 20-month-old baby daughter in the Eastern Cape.

“There is a fundamental problem in the psychological makeup of rapists. Communities are burdened with the task to evaluate abnormal behaviour and quickly respond to incidents similar to the rape and murder of a little baby girl,” said Kelly Baloyi, spokesperson for Action Society.

On 3 February, the Saps responded to the rape incident of the baby in Tankini, Ntsimbini.

The community temporarily detained the suspect after he was caught by his sister.

The woman had immediately alerted the community and police after the incident took place.

According to police spokesperson Brigadier Tembinkosi Kinana, the baby was rushed to a nearby hospital where she succumbed to her wounds.

Meanwhile, Baloyi called for a reform of South Africa’s criminal justice system.

“There is a serious need for urgent reform of the criminal justice system and social development sector. Monsters like this man must get the maximum punishment and perpetrators should start fearing the law.

“A leadership culture of integrity, transparency, accountability and responsibility is required to combat the scourge of gender-based violence and femicide [GBVF] in South Africa.”

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