Alleged serial rapist arrested after fleeing Wallacedene

Young girls playing near where the alleged rapist’s shack stood, asked the Northern News if there was a way they could show support for their neighbours and friends.

The parents of the victims claim he groomed them.

Police arrested an alleged 36-year-old serial rapist for the suspected rapes of five Wallacedene children – four girls and one boy, all aged eight.

Though Kraaifontein police spokesperson Captain Hein Hendricks said the alleged rapes took place between Saturday April 2 and Saturday April 10, at least one mother claimed her child had been raped by the man since at least December – “or even before that”.

The woman’s identity has been withheld to protect her eight-year-old boy.

She recalled an incident late last year when they went looking for the little boy and found him watching movies and sitting inappropriately between the legs of the suspect in his now-demolished shack.

On Sunday April 11, irate neighbours destroyed a shack belonging to the suspect and situated on a tiny, informal plot on Masondo Street.

“His father was shocked and told him to never go back there again. It didn’t look right. Other children were there but he was the only one who sat between his legs,” the visibly distraught mother told the Northern News on Wednesday April 14.

“He is the silent type. But he’s also a nomad who has lived in Strand, Stellenbosch and Bloekombos. That makes you wonder whether there will be more suspects to come forward,” the mother said.

She said it looked like he was grooming the children.

She said the man had apparently been giving the child hush money “because my son even knows his bank pin”.

The mother described the graphic details of the alleged rape encounters, as relayed to her by her son, and the effects on him, such as his skin cracking, and incontinence.

“So many other children have come forward this week to tell us he would attempt to lock them inside, or invite them all and then ask the others to go buy sweets while he and my son are locked inside,” the mother said.

She said her son appeared relieved now that the man is behind bars. The Northern News saw the child play with other children on Masondo Street.

Just around the corner, the mother of one of the girls who was allegedly raped, expressed disappointment at the man, whom they “trusted”.

The mother, whose identity has been withheld to protect the child, said: “He has destroyed me. You would never have thought that about him if you saw or knew him. He was very nice. I’ so disappointed, I don’ know how to put it. He has hurt me.”

Mbali Mathandela, one of the suspect’s neighbours, said she was shocked when her neighbour was accused of rape.

Captain Hendricks said: “The suspect fled Kraaifontein after his horrific deeds came to light. He was tracked to Extension 3, Mfuleni on Monday April 12 at 3pm by detectives following up on leads. He will appear in the Blue Downs Magistrate’s court once he is charged.”

National Prosecuting Authority spokesman Eric Ntabazalila had not responded to queries at the time of publication.

Acting station commissioner of Kraaifontein SAPS Colonel Mnonopeli Magobiyane thanked cops for tracing the suspect. He also thanked the community for providing the information that led to the arrest of the perpetrator.