Three men in High Court on gang-rape charge

Windhoek � Three men hailing from Otjukurune Reserve in the Gobabis District made their first appearance before Judge Christi Liebenberg in the Windhoek High Court on Thursday in connection with nine charges of rape, one count of assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm and one count of common assault.

Jan Gemeng, Tjaava Ebson and Godlieb Repanka Katuuo are accused of gang-raping a woman on June 17, 2014 at or near Otjukurune Reserve. It is alleged they each took a turn to violate the woman while the other two held her down.

According to the chargesheet, the three men first beat the woman until she was too weak to resist, whereafter they removed her clothing and raped her. It is also alleged that they beat up the woman's boyfriend, who may not be named to protect her identity, when he tried to come to her rescue.

According to the summary of substantial fact in the indictment, the complainant was at a bar with her boyfriend and two other friends drinking. The complainant later left the bar and walked home alone.

According to the charge sheet, whilst the complainant was on her way home, the three accused attacked her by assaulting her and her boyfriend. He had heard her screams and tried to come to her aid and take her home. However, it is stated, the accused turned on him and started to assault him and managed to chase him away.

Fearful for his life he left the complainant to the mercy of her attackers. It is further stated that the three accused then continued with their assault on the woman until she was too weak to offer any resistance and Gemeng then had forcible sexual intercourse with the complainant, followed by his two co-accused, while the others held the woman down.

After they finished their dirty deeds they allegedly pulled her into some bushes and left the scene.

The three accused told the court they do not have legal representation, as the lawyer that represented them in the Gobabis Magistrate's Court is no longer on their case. Judge Liebenberg instructed them to apply for legal aid as soon as possible and postponed the matter to February 16.

They are out on bail and their bail was extended until that date. State Advocate Felisitas Sikerete is appearing on behalf of the State.

Source: New Era Newspaper Namibia