Case against couple accused of forcing 11-year-old daughter into sex withdrawn
The case against a Free State couple who allegedly forced their daughter into sex was provisionally withdrawn in the Bloemfontein Regional Court on Friday.
Magistrate Leavit Mkansi said the State was violating the rights of the two accused by remanding the case further.
"The court believes you have a right to a trial and nothing has been done to advance your rights. The court finds that the defence has made a valid case of refusing a further remand. You are free to go," said Mkansi.
After Mkasi told them they were free to go, the woman shouted: "Amen."
The couple, who may not be named, to protect their childrens' identity, face charges of rape, sexual exploitation of children, failure to comply with the commission on sexual offences against children, and child abuse.
They are also accused of forcing their daughter, who was 11-years old, and their son, who was 9-years-old at the time, to take drugs.
The father was being held at Grootvlei Prison, while the mother was transported to and from Kimberley, where she was being held.
During the bail application in June last year, investigating officer Lesenyengo Matekane told the court that the mother had held down her daughter so that her friends could rape her.
When the girl tried to escape, her mother allegedly punched her and tried to break her fingers.
The police began investigating after a social worker complained about the conditions under which the children lived.
When the police arrived at the house, their father allegedly hid the children in a room under blankets and dirty clothes.
They were allegedly locked in the house without any contact with the outside world.
Mzimase Ntombela, who represented the couple in June, said at the time that money was the only reason the children did not go to school.
Their father apparently made between R500 and R1 000 every month painting houses.
Ntombela said there was nothing linking the father to the allegations and that he should be granted bail.
Both were later denied bail.