Anger over ‘brothel’ couple’s Mauritius trip

2012-04-10 12:38

A decision by the court to allow a couple accused of involvement in a sex ring to travel to Mauritius to witness their son being registered as a doctor was met with anger outside the Durban Magistrates Court.

“We are being turned into human trafficking factories. We have children only for them to be taken away from us and prostituted in this way just because we are poor while they put their children through medical school with the blood money made from our children,” said Philile Nala, the parent of a girl who is still missing after allegedly being kidnapped in 2000.

Today, Dr Genchen Rugnath (57) and his 46-year-old wife, Ravina, were granted permission to travel to Mauritius where their son is registering to be a medical doctor, after applying for the amendment of their bail conditions.

The couple, the owners of the Inn Town Holiday Lodge in the Durban Point area, had been released on bail of R30 000 each. The charges against them relate to alleged human trafficking and keeping a brothel.

Sixteen girls, eight of whom are minors, were rescued from the Inn Town Holiday Lodge by the Hawks.

Eight more girls were rescued in another brothel around the city centre.

They were allegedly used as sex slaves, held against their will and given drugs.

Said Nala: “Our children will never get a chance to be doctors. But they are allowed to travel to Mauritius to witness their son being registered to be a doctor there. It is not fair and I don’t understand it.”

Nala’s daughter, Sthembile, was 14 years old when she was allegedly abducted by the occupants of a black car in Nkandla on her way back from school.

While the girl dreamt of being a teacher, her mother says this dream will probably not be realised. But she still lives in hope that her daughter will one day return home.

The Rugnaths were arrested in an upmarket resort in Umhlanga on the evening of March 29.

Police had issued warrants for their arrest after the pair failed to hand themselves over upon their return to the country from a trip to Mauritius.

The couple, whose home is in Umhlanga Rocks, allegedly booked themselves into a hotel in the area under false names.

They were subsequently released on bail.

The alleged kingpin and two others were arrested during the Hawks raid in February this year.

The trio are in police custody and are set to appear for a bail application later this month.

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