Girl (14) is 'raped in police van'

Canaan Mdletshe

Canaan Mdletshe

A Pinetown police constable accused of raping a 14-year-old girl twice will have to return to court tomorrow for his bail application.

A magistrate in the local court yesterday postponed the case because the prosecutor did not turn up.

The officer, who cannot be named to protect the identity of the girl, was arrested last week after he allegedly raped the girl twice - in his office at the police station and on the way to her home.

The incident, which was highly condemned by groups advocating for women and children's rights, allegedly took place when the officer was investigating a break-in incident at the girl's home.

Police spokesperson Superintendent Vincent Mdunge said the officer was "ostensibly" investigating a break-in at the girl's home when the alleged rape happened.

"On the day of the alleged rape he told the girl he wanted to get her fingerprints for the house robbery case," said Mdunge.

"But he took her to his office and raped her. On the way to the teen's home he allegedly raped the girl again in his police van."

During the first court appearance last Tuesday, at which the officer applied for bail, he told the court that he had haad consensual sex with the teenager.

He said he had met her at the police station and they fell in love.

"I had sexual intercourse with her. I met her at the police station. She was my girlfriend and she told me she was 18 years old," the officer told the court.

He said he had only known the victim for two days but he was in love with her.

During the first appearance the investigating officer, Inspector Jabulani Shange, opposed bail because he feared for the safety of the girl and her grandmother, who is her legal guardian.

Members of Operation Bobbi Bear, a support group for child abuse victims, protested outside the court yesterday.