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QwaQwa - Police have arrested seven people on charges of various rapes in QwaQwa in the Free State, a statement sent on Friday said.

The Phuthaditjhaba crime combating unit as well as the family, child protection and sexual offences unit arrested the suspects in connection with rapes which allegedly occured in QwaQwa during the weekend and over the past two years. 

"The suspects committed crimes as individuals and groups on separate incidents," the police statement said.

It said four of those arrested were part of eight suspects wanted for raping and beating a woman while on her way home with her boyfriend from a tavern over the weekend. The group also robbed the pair of their clothes and cellphones during the attack.

A fifth man was arrested in Makwane for a separate rape. All five suspects - in their 20s and 30s - are due to appear at the Makwane Magistrate's Court.

Two more people were arrested at Tseki village for rapes committed between February 2016 and March 2017.

African News Agency/ANA