Broken copiers delay ‘satanic rape’ trial
Johannesburg - The court proceedings of four people including a pastor, accused of raping a child in an alleged satanic ritual, has been postponed because of a pair of broken photocopiers.
The child’s paternal grandparents, uncle and the 54-year-old pastor were arrested in February after an SAPS Occult Related Crimes Unit investigation.
Police suspect the group brought the then 7-year-old to the Full Gospel Church of God in Witfield, Boksburg, some time in 2013. The four – clad in robes and chanting – allegedly forced the boy to fondle their genitals before the uncle raped the child.
Proceedings were halted in the Germiston Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday by the prosecutor announcing the State was unable to hand over the docket and other important documents to the defence because the photocopiers at both courts in Germiston were broken.
The case was postponed to August 12.
The delay has sparked outrage from human rights NGO, Women and Men Against Child Abuse.
“Why did the State not at least use its own postal service or a PostNet to make copies of documents?” asked the group’s advocacy manager, Germaine Vogel.
“There is no consideration for the child victim whose daily life is being constantly disrupted by his court ordeal. He needs closure.
“His parents are distraught and we share their concern for the secondary trauma inflicted on them and their child by our criminal justice system. The State’s needs or lack of resources should not supercede the needs and rights of child victims.”
Vogel said ineffective and inefficient management and operational issues in Germiston courts were hampering the justice system and violating the constitution.