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RAPE CASE IN LIMBO AS DNA SAMPLES DISAPPEAR

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PIGG’S PEAK – If his wish can be granted, a prince accused of raping a woman will soon be a free man.
This is because the DNA samples, including those of the accused person’s blood and pubic hair cannot be located, according to testimony submitted in court.


DNA is the deoxyribonucleic acid which is the carrier of genetic information in nearly all living organisms and it also plays a crucial role in identifying body tissue as belonging to a specific subject.
The man accused of raping the woman, Elphas Foster Takhe Dlamini, wants the court to find out what happened to the body tissues which were taken from him by a police officer.


He said it appeared none of the police officers who testified were able to state what exactly happened to the samples.  Dlamini had in the previous trials been referred to as a prince, who was also part of an inner council which handled matters in his community. He also boasted about being a famous soccer player during his time, adding that he scored many goals.  He is now aged 46.


Dlamini, who pleaded not guilty to the charge of rape, appeared before Pigg’s Peak Principal Magistrate Joe Gumedze yesterday for the continuation of the trial.


 Located


He told the magistrate that he would not accept being convicted without the DNA samples being located.
He said the DNA evidence would be the only credible proof that he committed the alleged rape. Referring to the principal magistrate as ‘husband of my sister’, Dlamini also said he would write to the High Court for intervention in his matter. A police officer, Constable Mpendulo ‘City Corner’ Nxumalo, testified against Dlamini yesterday as one of the witnesses.
Dlamini, who referred to the police officer as ‘phoyisa lami’ wanted to know what happened to the DNA samples which he submitted in 2015.


He told the court that three police officers namely; Thando Dlamini, Nimrod Motsa and now Mpendulo Nxumalo could not tell him what happened to the samples.


He said the only explanation given was that it could be that the samples were thrown away while at the cold storage or that they were lost in South Africa (SA) because many countries were using the services.
Dlamini told the principal magistrate that he was prepared to appeal at the Supreme Court if his matter was not heard at the High Court.
He also requested to be given a copy of the charge sheet so that he could follow through the matter.
Undermine
The principal magistrate, however, warned Dlamini against undermining magistrates courts. He said there was a tendency by some accused persons to undermine the magistrates courts and that they ended up writing to the High Court but this worked against them.  The principal magistrate referred to recent cases where some of the accused persons had written to the High Court due to dissatisfaction at the magistrates court but that their requests were not granted. “They ended up being sentenced accordingly,” he said.
Dlamini was remanded in custody. During his previous court appearance, he challenged a testimony which was presented by Dr Chisoni Dziko.
This was the same doctor who examined Dlamini upon arrest by Buhleni police officers. Dziko had testified that when he first examined Dlamini, he had bite marks on his tongue.
The doctor could not state how Dlamini sustained the bites.
However, Dlamini asked the doctor how sure he was that the injury was caused by teeth or he had injured himself with a sharp object.
He also asked the doctor why the bite marks were only visible on the upper part of his tongue yet there was none under it.
As if that was not enough, he wanted the doctor to explain whether the semen which had been obtained from the alleged survivor was his or someone else’s. Dlamini wanted the doctor to state if there was a way he could tell that the semen indeed belonged to him.
The natter is still pending in court.

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