Bail postponed for mom accused of pimping daughter, 13, with Down syndrome
An Eastern Cape mother accused of pimping her daughter and two foreign nationals, who were her alleged customers, will spend at least 10 days behind bars after their bail application bid at Keiskammahoek magistrate’s court on Friday was postponed to June 7.
The 42-year-old mother and two Bangladesh nationals, aged 34 and 37, were arrested by the East London-based Hawks Serious Organised Crime Investigation team and Qonce (formerly King William’s Town) K9 unit on Wednesday on charges of human trafficking, rape of minors and contravention of the Immigration Act.
The mother of the 13-year-old girl suffering from Down syndrome is accused of selling her daughter and another 15-year old girl to the two suspects, who are shop owners in Keiskammahoek, for sexual exploitation from February 2019 to March 2021.
Magistrate Zwelethu Ngetu postponed the matter to allow the accused to secure legal defence.
Prosecutor Thembela Sithela indicated the state would oppose bail.
“The charges include human trafficking and sexual intercourse with children,” Sithela told Ngetu.
She said the trio’s legal representative had called her from East London to request that the matter be postponed to June 1.
One of the male accused requested a Bengali interpreter for their formal bail application.
Ngetu explained the charges they face, and warned them about the seriousness of the charges.
“You can conduct your own defence but due to the seriousness of these offences I would not recommend you do so,” said Ngetu.
Since their attorney had failed to appear, the trio elected to seek legal assistance from the court’s legal aid attorney.
Ngetu allowed the state and defence to agree on a suitable date for the formal bail application and both parties opted for June 7 for the investigating officer to be available for the proceedings.
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