Sunday, 6 September 2009

Rape accused blames drugs

September 01 2009 at 01:18PM

By Sherlissa Peters

A 51-year-old Pietermaritzburg woman relived her torturous rape ordeal in the city's High Court on Monday as she testified against her attacker.

The woman was testifying in the case of Sanele Shezi, 21, who is charged with nine counts of rape, one count of sexual assault, assault, kidnapping and robbery with aggravating circumstances.

Shezi has pleaded guilty to six counts of rape before Judge Achmat Jappie and two assessors, but has denied the other charges.

In his statement to the court, Shezi said that he was a drug addict and was highly intoxicated at the time of the attack on the night of April 4, 2008.

He said that while he knew what he was doing, the drugs had driven him to his actions.

Testifying on Monday, the slightly built woman said that on the night of the attack, she was alone at her Scottsville home and had gone to bed early, at about 8pm, to read, when she spilled coffee on her bedroom floor.

"I opened the back security gate to get a mop to clean up when a man stepped out from behind the washing machine with a carving knife.

"He indicated to me to keep quiet and told me to go back inside the house," she said, keeping her voice steady.

The woman, who identified Shezi as the man who attacked her, said he followed her inside the house, locking the door behind them.

He asked for money, then asked her for her cellphone, and followed her to the bedroom to fetch the phone.

It was then that at knifepoint he ordered her on to the bed and raped her several times, and subjected her to other sexual acts.

The woman said that between raping her, Shezi would pace up and down the room, asking her questions like whether she was married, when her birthday was and what book she was reading.

"The entire ordeal must have been around two hours and throughout this time I pleaded with him to spare my life," she said.

The woman said that it did not appear to her as if Shezi was intoxicated.

"He was in control of his actions and fully aware of what he was doing to me. He gave me the impression that he had planned the attack," she said.

When he eventually left, Shezi cut the woman's telephone cable which he used to tie her hands behind her back.

He also gagged her with a scarf that he found in her bedroom.

The woman said that the attack had long-standing effects on her.

She was on anti-retroviral drugs for a month after the incident, and thankfully she was HIV negative.

The case continues on Tuesday.

This article was originally published on page 3 of Daily News on September 01, 2009


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