Omotoso denied leave to appeal jurisdiction ruling, defence to approach SCA

Pastor Timothy Omotoso is standing trial for rape. (Eugene Coetzee, Gallo Images, The Herald, file)
Pastor Timothy Omotoso is standing trial for rape. (Eugene Coetzee, Gallo Images, The Herald, file)

The trial of rape-accused televangelist Timothy Omotoso and his two co-accused has been postponed to October 7 following the dismissal of their application for leave to appeal an earlier jurisdiction ruling.

Omotoso and co-accused, Lusanda Sulani and Zukiswa Sitho, wanted to have the number of charges against them reduced on the basis that some of the offences they are accused of allegedly took place while they were on international trips.

Defence lawyer Peter Daubermann argued that they should not be tried in a South African court for the charges related to those offences.

But Judge Irma Schoeman in the Eastern Cape High Court in Port Elizabeth denied the application, finding that there were no reasonable prospects of success on appeal.

Daubermann will now take his chances and petition the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) in Bloemfontein, a move which is expected to delay the trial for another 30 days.

In dismissing the leave to appeal application, Schoeman said there were no proper grounds for appeal because the Port Elizabeth High Court has the jurisdiction to hear the full charges.

Meanwhile, the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) welcomed the dismissal of the leave to appeal application.

Speaking to News24, acting NPA spokesperson Luxolo Tyali said: "We welcome the judgment because indeed there are no prospects of success in the matter.

"We also understand that the lawyer has a right to exercise further prospects to satisfy his clients. As you have witnessed him saying, he is going to petition the SCA," said Tyali.

Taking the matter to the SCA will mean that Daubermann has to solicit the services of another legal representative because he does not qualify to represent the accused there.

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