One of the Frankel eight, who won a legal victory for the survivors of sexual assault on Monday, hailed the ruling yesterday.
“We are very humbled and grateful about this far-reaching judgment. It is a major victory for everyone in South Africa,” Paul Diamond said.
Judge Claire Hartford ruled that children and adults would be allowed to lay charges of sexual and indecent assault at any time after they were abused – overturning the 20-year prescription, which the applicants had challenged. Diamond said that allowing the survivors to lay criminal charges of sexual violations would give those without money or power a voice to stand up to their abusers.
He was one of eight men and women who alleged that deceased billionaire Sidney Frankel had sexually assaulted and abused them as children.
They wanted to lay criminal charges against Frankel, but were limited by the prescription.
Their lawyer, Ian Levitt, said their success in overturning the 20-year limit would forever change the prosecution of sexual offenders in South Africa.
Diamond said that Levitt had been a giant and galvanised support for the case‚ with a strong legal team taking them to victory.
Diamond’s sister‚ Nicole Levenstein‚ said: “We have always said our charges were about changing the law. [This is] a victory for future generations and we can take the good from the bad.” She said she had been devastated to hear about Frankel’s death.
“I was looking forward to the day I came face to face with him in court.” – TimesLIVE