'Oprah accused has a case to answer'

A former dormitory parent at the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls in Henley-on-Klip, Vaal, has a case to answer, a Sebokeng magistrate ruled yesterday.

Magistrate Thelma Simpson dismissed Virginia Tiny Makopo's application to have charges against her withdrawn.

Makopo, through her defence lawyer Mosala Moleli, had applied to have four charges of indecent assault, five of common assault, two of soliciting a minor to perform an indecent act, one of assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm and two of crimen injuria be thrown out of the court. Makopo has pleaded not guilty to all charges.

Moleli said: "I humbly submit that at the end of the State's case, there is not enough evidence to convict Makopo. I apply that the accused be cleared of all charges she was charged with."

State prosecutor Etienne Venter opposed the application and said: "Makopo has a case to answer". Simpson agreed with Venter and said: "The question is indeed whether there is evidence before court to convict the accused. Therefore, the evidence before this court is that the accused has a case to answer and the application is refused."

The case was postponed until next Thursday.