Mbombela - A Mozambican national accused of raping a 10-year-old girl appeared in the Nelspruit Regional Court with a box dangling from his neck on Friday.
The 47-year-old, who currently lives in Mbombela, was not asked to plead to a charge of rape.
Everyone in court, including Magistrate Willie Wilkins, was surprised to see the box, which had drawings on it, hanging from a silk cord tied around his neck.
“What is that box hanging from the cord around your neck?” asked Wilkins.
“It is a piece of artwork I created myself. I hang it from my neck and take it wherever I go,” the man said through an interpreter.
“Is there a man inside?” Wilkins asked.
“No. It is something I use to keep my medication as I am sick. I ask the court for a speedy trial as I have been in custody for a long time now,” the accused said.
The man, who cannot be named until he has pleaded, was arrested on March 23, 2011, after he was accused of raping a girl in Mbombela.
Wilkins warned him that in future he should not enter the dock with any box dangling from his neck.
“The next time you enter this court, make sure you keep that box on the bench,” he said.