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School sex video ‘just tip of the iceberg’

The incident involving three school pupils caught on camera having sex while on school grounds was just “the tip of the iceberg”, says the Film and Publications Board.

Chief executive Yoliswa Makhasi said they had been closely following the Jules High School case where a girl and two boys were filmed while having sex. Their main concern was that child pornography had been created and was then distributed.

A security gaurd stands watch at the main entrance to The Jules High school as learners arrive. Credit: INDEPENDENT NEWSPAPERS

The 15-year-old girl and one of the boys, a 14-year- old, were charged with consensual sexual penetration. The second boy, 16, was charged with statutory rape. All three have also been charged under the Sexual Offences and Film and Publication Act.

Makhasi said others who had the video clip or distributed it could also be charged.

“Regardless of their age or role in the incident, the children may be charged with the creation, production, distribution or possession of child pornography as this is illegal,” Makhasi said.

“We wish to send a strong message that anyone found guilty of producing child pornography may face a hefty jail term and/or fine. Those found in possession of or distributing child porn may also face harsh sentences.”

She said the board had picked up a number of cases where sex videos were filmed and distributed at schools. “We believe the issue of Jules is the tip of the iceberg.”

Makhasi said earlier this year officials had visited a number of schools in Cape Town where these videos had been distributed.

She said technology was bringing new challenges to schools and these had to be faced by the Department of Basic Education. The board had recently called on the department to include cyber safety content and awareness in the life skills curriculum.

Makhasi said schools had been invited to bring pupils’ sex videos to the board’s attention so teachers and pupils could be taught about appropriate behaviour.

But she said schools often did not want to bring videos to anyone’s attention because they were concerned about their reputation.

Makhasi said the incident at Jules High had drawn attention to the child pornography “crisis” faced by South Africa and urged internet service providers and cellphone operators to take action to prevent distribution.

She commended Vodacom, MTN and Cell C’s move this week to ban access to controversial chat site Outoilet.

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