Video circulates of girl being raped in S.Africa

Apr 18, 2012, 4:03 PM

Associated Press

JOHANNESBURG (AP) – When a 17-year-old girl said to have the mental capacity of a 5-year-old was reported missing four weeks ago in the sprawling South African township of Soweto, police distributed her photo and asked neighborhood 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, they on Wednesday 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 cell phone, was widely circulated on the Internet and via cell phones. The league said it again raises questions about South Africans’ attitudes toward rape and women in a country with horrifyingly high rape statistics.

“When does it become acceptable amongst 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 Wednesday.

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 Makhubela said soon after learning of the video Tuesday, police, with help from people in Soweto, arrested seven men who appeared in the video. Some of the suspects identified the girl’s possible location in sprawling Soweto, and police moved through that neighborhood Wednesday, announcing on loudspeakers that they planned to search every home.

The eighth suspect then surrendered and the girl was found in his home, Makhubela said. He described her as quiet and apparently traumatized, and said she was taken first to counselors and then to a hospital.

Makhubela said anyone found to have passed along the video could face criminal charges.

According to the most recent police statistics, more than 66,000 rapes and other sexual offenses were reported in South Africa in the year ending in early 2011. Experts say many rapes go unreported because the victims are ashamed or afraid, or because they believe police will not act.

The state news agency BuaNews quoted South Africa’s minister for women’s affairs, Lulu Xingwana, as calling the gang rape “despicable.” Xingwana added that with the wide distribution of the video of the attack, the victim “is now subjected to a second assault on her dignity.”

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

World News

Ukrainian servicemen carry the coffin with the remains of Army Col. Oleksander Makhachek during a f...
Associated Press

As Ukraine loses troops, how long can it keep up the fight?

ZHYTOMYR (AP) — As soon as they had finished burying a veteran colonel killed by Russian shelling, the cemetery workers readied the next hole. Inevitably, given how quickly death is felling Ukrainian troops on the front lines, the empty grave won’t stay that way for long. Col. Oleksandr Makhachek left behind a widow, Elena, and […]
1 month ago
(Instagram photo/@Clayton.Wolfe)...
Wills Rice

Arizona realtor announces new listing on ‘the top-floor’ of Mount Everest

Arizona realtor Clayton Wolfe scaled the treacherous 29,035-foot heights of Mount Everest in Nepal and announced a new listing at the summit.
1 month ago
(Photo by: Jonathan Wiggs/Boston Globe/Getty Images)...
Associated Press

‘Tiger King’ star ‘Doc’ Antle arrested for money laundering charges

“Tiger King” star “Doc” Antle was arrested by the FBI and expected to appear in court Monday to face federal money laundering charges.
1 month ago
(AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)...
Associated Press

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey in Israel for talks with political and business leaders

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey is in Israel for five days of talks with political and business leaders of the Middle Eastern country.
1 month ago
A man rides a bicycle in front of a building ruined by shelling in Borodyanka, on the outskirts of ...
Associated Press

Russia takes steps to bolster army, tighten grip on Ukraine

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Russian President Vladimir Putin issued an order Wednesday to fast track Russian citizenship for residents of parts of southern Ukraine largely held by his forces, while lawmakers in Moscow passed a bill to strengthen the stretched Russian army. Putin’s decree applying to the Kherson and Zaporizhzhia regions could allow Russia to […]
1 month ago
FILE - McDonald's restaurant is seen in the center of Dmitrov, a Russian town 75 km., (47 miles) no...
Associated Press

De-Arching: McDonald’s to sell Russia business, exit country

McDonald’s is closing its doors in Russia, ending an era of optimism and increasing the country’s isolation over its war in Ukraine. The Chicago burger giant confirmed Monday that it is selling its 850 restaurants in Russia. McDonald’s said it will seek a buyer who will employ its 62,000 workers in Russia, and will continue […]
2 months ago

Sponsored Articles

(Courtesy Condor)...
Condor Airlines

Condor Airlines shows passion for destinations from Sky Harbor with new-look aircraft

Condor Airlines brings passion to each flight and connects people to their dream destinations throughout the world.
Carla Berg, MHS, Deputy Director, Public Health Services, Arizona Department of Health Services

Vaccines are safe if you are pregnant or breastfeeding

Are you pregnant? Do you have a friend or loved one who’s expecting?

Best retirement savings rates hit 4.30%

Maximize your retirement savings with guaranteed fixed rates up to 4.30%. Did you know there is a financial product that can give you great interest rates as you build your retirement savings and provide you with a paycheck for life once you retire? It might sound too good to be true but it is not; this product is called an annuity.
Video circulates of girl being raped in S.Africa