Girl Evaluated in Child Abuse Case

Cape Times (South Africa), August 16, 2011 | Go to article overview

Girl Evaluated in Child Abuse Case


THE KNYSNA Regional Court will rule today on a state application for another postponement of the trial of three people accused of sexual offences against children in the Harkerville area of Plettenberg Bay.

The trial was set to start yesterday morning, but prosecutor advocate Nadia Ajam requested a three-month postponement, saying a 16-year-old complainant, who was to testify about 32 of the 48 charges in the case, was still too traumatised and emotionally disturbed to testify and required psychiatric evaluation.

The three accused in the case are a 67-year-old Danish national who owns a large property in Harkerville, where the alleged offences are said to have taken place, a 28-year-old Kranshoek woman, and the Danish man's 27-year-old Malawian common law wife.

They have yet to plead to charges of sexual assault, "grooming" (preparing an underage victim for sex), sexual exploitation and showing pornography to minors.

The charges relate to the period 2007 to 2010 and allegedly involve underage girls from disadvantaged communities in Kranshoek and an impoverished group living in a cluster of rundown homes at The Barracks in Harkerville.

Charges against another two accused, an Austrian man and an ANC office bearer from Kranshoek, were dropped earlier.

According to Ajam, the child was still suffering from the alleged acts of sexual assault, her subsequent removal from her home and social welfare attempts to find her a place of safety. …

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