Man linked to six rape cases and robberies

2018-07-18 06:01

Eric Mkhulu Seba­tana (35), also known as Yoyo, faces six rape charges set for trial in the High Court in November.

Sebatana, from Bethlehem, also faces charges of burglary and a botched farm robbery beside the six rape cases.

He was caught in February after evading arrest since 2008.

Sebatana was arrested during a botched armed robbery on a farm outside Reitz in February.

Capt. Zweli Mohobeleli, spokesperson of the Bethlehem police cluster, said Sebatana, classified as a serial rapist, remains behind bars until the start of the trial in the High Court.

Mohobeleli said the trial has been transferred after the pre-trial hearing in the Lower Court in Bethlehem.

Mohobeleli said in all six rape cases and in the burglary cases, DNA results were positively linked to the accused.

According to the police records, the crimes were committed from 2008 to 2016 in the Bethlehem township of Bohlokong.

Mohobeleli said Sabatana had been evading arrest, switching between towns in the region, and altering his identity regularly.

He said Sabatana had threatened his victims with a knife and thereafter raped them.

According to the police findings, the first rape case involved a woman (then 27 years old), who was raped in December 2008.

This was followed by raping an 18-year-old in 2010 at an open veld near the Vuka cemetery.

Another 18-year-old was raped in 2012 in the early hours at a house after a chase by the accused.

Another one of the victims was a teenage girl, who was 14 years old at the time she was raped in 2012.

Mohobeleli said the teenager was waiting for her boyfriend at his home when the suspect dragged her away and raped her.

The fifth victim, a woman aged 20 in 2014, was raped in the early evening.

The sixth victim, then 35 years old, was raped at night in 2016 on her way home from a local tavern.

Mohobeleli said Sebatana was also linked to a burglary at a house in February 2012.

He said items to the value of R6 000 were stolen.

Sebatana is also one of the five suspects arrested regarding a botched farm robbery outside Reitz in February.

The other suspects are Lebohang Mokoena, Pule Moloi, Tankiso Mofokeng (all South Africans) and Masitifa Makawana (from Malawi).

Mohobeleli said investigation into the robbery at the farm was ongoing.

“The other four suspects arrested were released on bail and the case is pending due to forensic investigation.

“Sebatana was denied bail,” said Mohobeleli.

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