Hymns sung as four rape suspects appear

Canaan Mdletshe

Canaan Mdletshe

Hundreds of protesters gathered outside the Pinetown magistrate's court yesterday when four rape suspects appeared for the second time.

The men are alleged to have raped a 21-year-old Durban woman in a sugarcane plantation in Hillcrest on March 2. They also allegedly held the woman's father at gunpoint and made him watch while they took turns raping his daughter.

The protesters held hands and sang hymns while waiting for the accused to arrive. They demanded that bail be denied.

Among the protesters was former Miss South Africa Megan Coleman, who lives in Hillcrest.

She was also among the protesters when the suspects first appeared in court last month.

Magistrate Corel Language postponed the case to May 6.

The father and his daughter were fishing at a dam when they were accosted by the armed gang who allegedly robbed them.

The case received widespread publicity and the public and women's groups were incensed by the actions of the suspects.

Language said the matter was postponed for further investigations. Two of the accused will be kept in custody at Westville Prison and the third will be kept at the Constantia holding cells.

The fourth accused will be held at KwaNdengezi police holding cells.

Two of the accused have abandoned their bail applications, while the remaining two will apply for bail on May 6. A fifth accused was not present in court.