Nine men arrested in two separate incidents
In a new low for gender-based violence in the country, Letlhakane Police are investigating two suspected gang-rapes believed to have taken place within the space of three days in the mining town.
In total nine accused rapists appeared before Letlhakane Magistrate Court last Thursday.
In the first incident, which occurred on the evening of Saturday 1 August, a 25-year-old woman was allegedly raped by four men she had been drinking with.
The quartet, whose ages range between 27 and 34, include Gabautwe Andrew, Gabautwe Meshack, Oabona Emmanuel, and Kopanngwe Karabo.
Confirming the investigations, Letlhakane Station Commander, Michael Maphephu told The Voice the complainant had been drinking with the four men earlier in the night.
“Apparently one of the men told her he suspects she was poisoned and promised to help her ‘remove it’. He then accompanied the victim to her home in the Tawana ward, where she allowed him entry. The others followed and raped the woman.”
Maphephu revealed all four suspects were arrested four days after the alleged rape.
“They were remanded in custody and will appear in court again on the 20th of August,” added the top cop.
Incredibly, on the same day the four men were apprehended – Tuesday 4 August – Letlhakane police also arrested five teenagers in connection with a separate rape incident.
The five are accused of raping a 17-year-old mentally unstable girl last Monday.
“They allegedly took the poor girl to their friend’s house in Phase One where they all raped her,” stated Maphephu, adding the quintet, aged between 17 and 18, were also remanded in custody to appear in court again on 20 August.
The five are: Thabiso Tshekiso, Oreleng Malejane, Ahmed Tathelelo, Brian Dikete and Thapelo Gaopalelwe.
Admitting he was deeply concerned by the development, the police boss revealed that rape cases in his jurisdiction were now up to 48 since the start of the year
“I urge people to take care of themselves. Be careful with whoever buys them alcohol because some people want to get others drunk with the intention of then raping them. I also advise women to resist from walking alone more especially at night as they can easily be attacked,” concluded the Station Commander.