Jabu faces kidnapping, rape charges

Sipho Mthembu

Sipho Mthembu

Orlando Pirates' star midfielder, Jabu Mahlangu, will hand himself over to Hillbrow police this morning.

This after police arrived at the Buccaneers' training session yesterday morning looking for him regarding allegations of kidnapping and statutory rape.

Sowetan has reliably learnt that the charges were pressed by a 19-year-old woman from Pretoria who met the Bucs' star after Saturday's Soweto derby against Kaizer Chiefs.

Yesterday Mahlangu said: "I learnt this morning that police are looking for me. I informed the club, who informed its lawyer in Cape Town.

"The lawyer advised [me] to wait until he arrives [this] morning so that he can accompany me to the cop station."

A Captain Sathekge, of the Hillbrow police station, would neither confirm nor deny the charges yesterday.

"We are still investigating. Call me tomorrow," he said.

Mahlangu confirmed that he was introduced to the woman by his brother's girlfriend on Saturday.

"We partied with the two of them on Saturday night. We later took them home and on Sunday they called my brother to pick them up from Kempton Park, which he did," said Mahlangu.

"We excused ourselves for some privacy and it was then that she received a call and asked to leave. I asked a friend to take her home.

"I was surprised, and so were several people who were there, to learn this morning that she had laid these charges against me," Mahlangu said.

Sowetan learnt that the woman had been missing from her home for the past two weeks. Her aunt, who introduced herself as Esther, asked to be called back in five minutes but the phone went unanswered thereafter.

The latest saga could prove a huge setback for Mahlangu, who had begun mending his ways after joining Pirates and changing his surname from Pule to Mahlangu early last year.

Kaizer Chiefs was Mahlangu's first club. While there he got into off-the-pitch trouble until they lost patience and refused to renew his contract when it ended in 2004.

His fortunes were no different at Austrian club SV Mattersburg, where he stayed for eight months.

He was asked to leave the club after allegedly jealous teammates set him up, handing him his car keys after some heavy partying.