Two men, aged 32 and 39, are set to appear in the Giyani Magistrates’ Court today in connection with the kidnapping and rape of a woman in Phalaborwa last week, reported the South African Police Service (SAPS) in Limpopo.
According to SAPS spokesperson in Limpopo, Colonel Moatshe Ngoepe, the suspects were arrested after a 22-year-old foreign national woman employed at her cousin’s restaurant was kidnapped and raped at a lodge in Phalaborwa on Thursday. It had been reported that the business owner had requested a customer to transport the victim to a house in Giyani.
“While driving home, suddenly they were blocked by a bakkie and a Mercedes Benz vehicle. Three occupants alighted from the vehicles and one fired shots, pointing at the driver. The suspects dragged the 22-year-old woman out of the vehicle and forced her into the Mercedes vehicle,” Ngoepe said.
Police were immediately informed and a manhunt was launched.
Ngoepe said later on, the suspects inside the Mercedes allegedly handed over the victim to the two suspects who were driving the bakkie. He said these suspects, believed to be Ethiopian nationals, drove from Giyani to Phalaborwa town and rented two separate rooms at a lodge.
“One of the suspects aged 32, locked himself [in] with the victim and repeatedly raped her until the next day, 22 January 2021. Police investigations and the manhunt led to the suspects being arrested at the same lodge at about 7am [and the victim was rescued],” said Ngoepe.
“The manhunt for the remaining three suspects is still under way. Anyone with information that can lead to their apprehension may contact Detective Sergeant Ian Mabasa on 076-858-0003 or 063-452-0000, or the crime stop number 086-00-10111 or the nearest police station or MySAPSApp,” he added.