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By Citizen Reporter


16-year-old among 14 suspects linked to Krugersdorp gang rape, NPA confirms

The NPA says the state has established prospects of a successful prosecution against the 14 suspects.

Seven more suspects have been positively linked to the rape of eight women in West Village, Krugersdorp.

This brings the total number of suspects to 14, after seven were identified on Wednesday.

The suspects are facing a string of charges including multiple counts of rape, robbery and contravening the Immigration Act, among others.

They were among more than 80 illegal miners who were arrested shortly after the eight women were robbed and raped during the filming of a music video in West Village on 28 July.

Court case

According to the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), the state has established prospects of a successful prosecution against the 14 suspects, with one of them confirmed to be a minor, aged 16.

“Yesterday, we had one of the accused persons alleging that he was a minor so the investigating officer was then tasked to [look into the matter]. This morning, he took the minor to Leratong Hospital so that age assessments can be conducted.

“That has been done and the feedback therefore is that indeed he is a minor,” NPA Gauteng  spokesperson Phindi Mjonondwane told the media outside Krugersdorp Magistrates’ Court on Thursday.

“[The minor] was then separated from the case that involves all the adult accused, and he will now be undergoing the preliminary enquiry, which is expected to happen [on Friday],” she further said.

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Mjonondwane added that the 16-year-old would be held at a place of safety.

She also explained that the court hearings of the 82 suspects will be separated as the proceedings continue.

“All the 14 accused persons were part of the 82 that appeared in court so now they have been separated because the remaining suspects are now are facing the charge of contravening the Immigration Act.

“Most of those accused appeared [in court] yesterday and their cases were postponed,” she said.

Some of the accused have abandoned bail as they pleaded guilty, while the rest have indicated that they want to apply for legal aid.

In addition, the NPA has ruled out roping in more suspects to the rape charge as investigations continue.

No permission

It has since been revealed that the film production crew, which consisted of 22 people including the eight women, did not have permission to shoot near the abandoned mines where the incident took place.

The Mogale City Municipality confirmed to News24 that no application had been submitted to film in the area.

“No permission was sought for the shoot,” said Bryan Murray from the Mogale City municipality’s public and safety offices.

READ MORE: SAPU pledges for the reinstatement of the old illegal mining special unit

Murray said an assessment had to be conducted by the municipality before permission was either granted or denied.

The suspects robbed all the victims of their clothes, cellphones, rings, passports, watches, handbags, cash, camera and other valuables to the value of at least R1.5 million.

Meanwhile, Police Minister Bheki Cele has confirmed that more than 300 illegal miners have been arrested in the West Rand during a police operation targeting zama zamas.

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