Rape accused televangelist Timothy Omotoso has been denied bail in the Port Elizabeth High Court, according to reports.
Judge Phillip Zilwa on Wednesday denied the Nigerian pastor's latest bid to be released while his trial continued, eNCA reported.
The court found that exceptional circumstances had not been shown by Omotoso, and he had not brought new facts, the report added.
Members and supporters of Omotoso's JDI church stood sombrely outside the High Court after the application was dismissed, HeraldLive reported.
The defence indicated its intention to lodge an application for leave to appeal, according to eNCA.
Omotoso's on trial along with his two co-accused Lusanda Sulani and Zukiswa Sitho.
They faced 97 charges, including rape, human trafficking and racketeering, for allegedly targeting and recruiting young girls for sexual exploitation, News24 previously reported.
It's alleged that the girls were moved from their homes to two mission houses in KwaZulu-Natal, where they were allegedly made to engage in sexual acts.
Omotoso had been in jail since his arrest in 2017.
This is a developing story.
- Compiled by Paul Herman