The Port Elizabeth High Court in Gqeberha on Wednesday is expected to rule on an application by rape-accused televangelist Timothy Omotoso, who wants the sex-related charges against him and his two co-accused dismissed.
Omotoso and his co-accused – Lusanda Sulani and Zukiswa Sitho – face 97 charges including rape, human trafficking and racketeering for allegedly targeting and recruiting young girls for sexual exploitation.
It is alleged that the girls were moved from their homes to two mission houses in KwaZulu-Natal, where they were allegedly made to engage in sexual acts with Omotoso.
The pastor has been in jail since 20 April 2017 while Sulani and Sitho are currently out on bail.
Omotoso’s lawyer, Peter Dauberman, has argued for the dismissal of the charges because the prosecutors appointed by the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) were in an acting capacity when his clients pleaded in the case.
He told the high court the prosecutors were not appointed by the national director of public prosecutions (NDPP), and therefore did not have the authority to prosecute the case.
The state conceded the prosecutors were appointed in an acting capacity in May 2020 through had an arrangement that was approved by the NDPP and the Department of Justice.