Timothy Omotoso, Lusanda Sulani and Zukiswa Sitho at the Port Elizabeth High Court. Picture: Raahil Sain / African News Agency (ANA)

Port Elizabeth - Nigerian pastor Timothy Omotoso, charged with human trafficking and the rape of young girls, was dealt another blow in the Port Elizabeth High Court on Monday. 

Omotoso’s petition to the Supreme Court of Appeal for leave to appeal was dismissed warranting the Port Elizabeth High Court jurisdiction over the matter. 

The judgment by the SCA stated that there were no reasonable prospects of success adding that there was no other compelling reason why an appeal should be heard. 

Omotoso and his two co-accused Lusanda Sulani and Zukiswa Sitho were back in the Port Elizabeth High Court on Monday to hear the verdict. 

The women are accused of recruiting girls from all over the country for purposes of sexual exploitation. 

Their lawyer Peter Daubermann indicated that he would take the matter to the Constitutional Court.  

The Port Elizabeth High Court had earlier dismissed an application for leave to appeal against a decision, to allow the trial to be heard in Port Elizabeth.

Omotoso faces 63 main charges  and Daubermann previously argued that the court did not have jurisdiction to preside over the trial. Omotoso and his co-accused face charges which allegedly occurred in Durban, Richards Bay and Bloemfontein.

The televangelist allegedly trafficked more than 30 girls and women who were from various branches of his church to a house in Umhlanga, KwaZulu-Natal, where he allegedly sexually exploited them.

Omotoso was arrested on April 20, 2017, by the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation, at the Port Elizabeth Airport. He has been denied bail on two occasions as he was deemed a flight risk. The women were arrested in November 2017 and are out on bail of R2 000.

The case was postponed until November 21.

African News Agency/ANA