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Cape Town - The man accused of repeatedly raping a 13-year-old girl could barely raise his voice in court on Monday.

The 48-year-old man was the girl’s stepfather and allegedly paid the child’s mother - his own partner - so he could abuse her.

He was arrested soon after the mom and was charged with rape.

During his first court appearance on Monday, he could barely make himself heard to the magistrate to record his address.

The rape accused stood staring blankly ahead for most of the time while his fate was decided.

The four other accused also lined up in the dock and hardly said a word. One of the women accused was the only one who tried to communicate with the legal aid lawyer while standing in the dock. The others nervously waited to hear the court’s outcome.

They stood and listened as the magistrate decided when they could apply for bail.

All the details of their alleged crimes have not yet come to light. Cops are now following up leads as far away as Mossel Bay to arrest everyone involved in the sex ring.

The traumatised girl has also been assisting cops with the investigation.

Social Development spokesperson Melany Kühn says the girl has been taken to a place of safety and is settling in well.

“She is processing her traumatic ordeal and is receiving much-needed counselling and support,” Melany told the Daily Voice.

* This article was published in the Daily Voice