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DNA ‘exonerates’ rape suspect

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“The suspect was arrested as a person of interest, although he was released before he appeared in court.”

ANC WARD councillor Paul Kok intends taking legal action for his wrongful arrest and for the charges that were brought against him, after DNA samples that were taken in relation to a rape case involving a minor did not match his profile.

Charges of rape, attempted rape and abduction were opened following an alleged incident that took place on February 8, 2019 whereupon Kok was arrested and detained.

Kok never appeared before court and was jubilantly carried out of the holding cells on the shoulders of community members when he was released.

According to the charges, a 14-year-old girl, who is mentally disabled, along with another young woman, were both allegedly locked in a veteran’s house in Lerato Park and were apparently only released on February 10, 2019.

Kok had maintained that he was innocent all along.

“I still maintain that I have never, or ever in my life, raped anyone. I never appeared in court for the alleged rape case because there was no such thing. The DNA tests were brought back and proved that I was innocent.”

He indicated that he would request his attorney to begin with civil charges against his accusers.

Kok explained that he had presented himself to the police station on February 12, 2019 when the allegations arose.

“I was charged with rape and was locked up in the police cells. I went to court on February 14 but never appeared before any magistrate. I was released from the court cells by the police, who told me that there was no case against me. Since that date, I never appeared in court again.”

Police spokesperson Captain Bashoabile Kale confirmed that the DNA results did not match those of the suspect who was arrested in connection with the case last year.

“The suspect was arrested as a person of interest, although he was released before he appeared in court.”

He added that the victim’s family requested that the DNA samples to be retested when the results proved to be negative.

“The ‘retake’ samples also did not match those of the suspect.”

Kale stated that the State prosecutor would have to make a decision regarding the prosecution of the case.

“The Department of Justice will meet with the family of the complainant to inform them of the outcome of the DNA results as well as their decision whether the case will proceed.”

He said no further arrests had been made in connection with the case.

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