Church rape case postponed

2013-03-14 19:18
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Johannesburg - A Zion Christian Church (ZCC) member accused of raping a woman appeared in the Mankweng Magistrate's Court on Thursday, Limpopo police said.

Police spokesperson Moses Molepo said Moatshe Molefe would be back in court on 28 March, when his bail application would continue.

"Today [Thursday] the police asked for more time to confirm the suspect's residential address. He currently stays in Brits in the North West."

Molefe was arrested on 3 March after a 27-year-old woman claimed he had held a knife to her throat and raped her the previous morning, during an all-night prayer session at the church's headquarters in Moria, near Polokwane.

The church said on Sunday the rape was regrettable.

"The church leadership regrets the alleged rape incidents on the premises and will fully co-operate with authorities in their investigation," spokesperson Ephraim Mafetsa said in a statement.

Mafetsa said Molefe was not a prophet, as was reported earlier, but an ordinary member.

Another rape happened in June last year, also on the church's premises.

The matter was still before a court, Mafetsa said.

The church was "saddened" by the bad publicity the crimes had caused.

"We encourage members and visitors to the church not to hesitate to report such incidents so that the law can take its course."

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