Taxi driver arrested for sexual assault of girls
A PORT Elizabeth jikeleza (area-specific taxi) driver has been arrested for allegedly raping three schoolgirls lured into his taxi under the pretence of giving them a lift.
According to police, the three cases took place separately in the Kwazakhele area between August 17 and August 29.
The 24-year-old driver was arrested two weeks ago and appeared in the Motherwell Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday. He can only be identified once he pleads in court.
Police spokesman Captain Andre Beetge said the man was a contract driver for the owner of a red Toyota Corolla that he operated mainly in the Kwazakhele area.
“The girls were taken to the bushes in the Markman township area, where he allegedly raped them,” he said.
The first reported case happened on August 17 when a 15-year-old girl was picked up at 3pm.
Another incident was reported on August 25 when another 15-year-old was picked up at 2.30pm.
The last known attack happened on August 29, when a 17-year-old was picked up while walking to school at about 8am.
“In all these cases, the victims gave the same description of the driver and the taxi used,” Beetge said.
He said in all the cases the girls had been dropped off in a street near to their homes after the alleged rape.
The police’s Motherwell Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences (FCS) unit tracked down the vehicle and a tracker inside the vehicle allegedly linked the suspect to all three rapes.
Beetge said it was suspected that more girls might have fallen victim to the alleged rapist.
The case was postponed to September 20 for a formal bail application.
The man will remain in custody until then.
Anyone who has been the victim of a similar attack should contact Captain Michael Shanagen on 082779-7292.