A man who was raped in a police cell six years ago, when he was 17, suffered lasting trauma that affected his school work and mental health, the Pietermaritzburg High Court heard on Monday.
He is now suing the minister of safety and security for R920 000.
The minister has conceded liability, but not the amount to be paid out.
The man was arrested for theft in October 2007, along with two others, and detained in the Pongola police station cells. He was raped by a 43-year-old cell mate.
Clinical psychologist Zanele Khumalo said when she interviewed the man, he had diminished concentration levels, was unable to think clearly and had dropped out of school because he feared that his co-accused would reveal to everyone that he had been raped.
At the time of the rape he was in Grade 9.
“The psychological scars are something that will live with him for the rest of his life,” she said.
Although she recommended 40 sessions of psychological treatment, she said it could be more or less, depending on his progress. Each session cost R700 and that would increase by 6 percent next year.
She said the incident had delayed his earning capacity because he had dropped out of school and, when he enrolled at another, he failed.
It also resulted in his entering the job market late.
Court papers said the rape took place because police failed to take steps to ensure his safety and to ensure that he was not detained with adults.
They also failed to monitor the condition of the detainees.
The case continues on Tuesday.