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Trial of well-known jazz musician facing rape charges gets delayed, again

Jazz musician appeared in Blue Downs Magistrates Court on the charges of rape and sexual grooming. Picture: File

Jazz musician appeared in Blue Downs Magistrates Court on the charges of rape and sexual grooming. Picture: File

Published Nov 1, 2023


Cape Town - The case against a well-known jazz musician facing charges of rape has again been postponed.

The trial was expected to start in May but the case was postponed until September, and after the transformer near the Blue Downs Magistrate’s Court blew up, the trial was moved to yesterday, when it was postponed yet again.

The court heard that the musician had once again changed lawyers. The State said they tried to get in contact with the lawyers unsuccessfully.

The accused told the court: “I sent a text to the lawyer, but he has trials in other courts.” The matter was then postponed to November 17 for legal representation.

The 50-year-old musician, a former director of a Cape Town music school, was arrested in July 2022, by detectives attached to the Kuils River Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences Unit.

His victim was only 14 when the alleged sexual attacks started and continued until he was 20.

He reported the case at the age of 21; his family said they would only comment when the case was finalised.

The accused, who cannot be identified, knew the boy, who was a student at the music school, as he was a family friend.

The accused is well known in the music industry and has shared the stage with local music giants and international artists, and got his footprint in the Cape Town International Jazz festival in 2016 after releasing an album.

The National Prosecuting Authority’s regional spokesperson, Eric Ntabazalila, previously said: “A Cape Town jazz musician and director of an Athlone music school was charged with rape, sexual assault and sexual grooming.

“He was released on bail of R1 000. More charges are likely to be added as the investigation continues.”

Rape survivor and gender-based violence (GBV) activist June Dolley-Major said the musician was delaying the trial purposely.

“This is just another delaying tactic and it’s just not fair on the victim because it’s again justice that is delayed, and justice delayed is justice denied. There are constant postponements, every time there is an issue, a different thing happens and then it’s postponed.

“In all honesty it’s all wrong on every level that this has to continue,” she added. “And now he’s asking for another lawyer and it’s again time that the new lawyer has to get acquainted with the docket and get all the information, and that takes time. It is really sad that this is happening.”