Assault and rape accused denied bail

ROB KNOWLES

A MAN accused of assaulting his former girlfriend and of raping a juvenile was denied bail at the Port Alfred Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday

At around 3am on December 11 last year Sinethemba Mani, 35, allegedly attempted to break into his former girlfriend’s home by banging on her door.

During cross examination prosecutor Paul Rossouw established that when Mani’s ex-girlfriend refused to open the door Mani attempted to force his way in, and the door struck her in the face.

Mani then allegedly punched her in the face. His ex-girlfriend hit him with a kitchen door panel and he left.

Around 20 minutes later a juvenile, whose age was not disclosed, awoke in her Bathurst home to find Mani in bed with her, and he confessed to having sex with her.

The alleged victim then apparently began fighting back and Mani slapped her and she bit him on the hand. After this Mani left and the victim sent an SMS to friends to ask for help.

According to his testimony, Mani initially pleaded guilty to the charges but, during cross examination, said the sex with the juvenile had been consensual. Rossouw asked if Mani was aware of the protesters that had appeared outside court at each of his previous appearances to which he answered he was not.

Having weighed the evidence against him and, taking into account previous convictions for rape and theft, magistrate Louis Muller said he did not believe it in the interest of justice to allow bail.

Mani will therefore remain in custody until his trial, set for March 5 at the Regional Court.

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