Sat | Jun 19, 2021

Missing girl gang-raped

Published:Thursday | April 19, 2012 | 12:00 AM

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa (AP):

When a 17-year-old girl said to have the mental capacity of a five-year-old was reported missing four weeks ago in the sprawling South African township of Soweto, police distributed her photo and asked neighbourhood residents for help.

Then a video emerged of seven men and boys raping the girl. Within a day of media alerting them to the video, police said yesterday, they found the girl in a house across Soweto from her home. Eight men and boys were arrested on charges of kidnapping and rape.

The women's league of the governing African National Congress said the video, apparently recorded on a cellphone, was widely circulated on the Internet and via cellphones. The league said it again raises questions about South Africans' attitudes towards rape and women in a country with horrifyingly high rape statistics.

"When does it become acceptable among a group of peers to rape a girl and laugh about it? It just makes one sick to the stomach," the league said in a statement yesterday.

New media

The league commended a mother who saw the video clip on her child's mobile phone and ensured it came to the attention of the police, and urged other parents to monitor what their children are doing with new technology and new media.

Police spokesman Kay Makhu-bela said soon after learning of the video on Tuesday, police, with help from people in Soweto, arrested seven men who appeared in the video.