As State Advocate Inocencia Niyoni this week closed the state’s case in the trial of a 40-year-old Namibian male accused of raping five minor girls, the accused yesterday took to the box in defence before Judge President Damaseb.
It is the state’s case that Bertus Koch raped these girls aged between 11 and 13 some time between 2015 and 2016 after luring them in his zinc house in Swakopmund’s DRC and faces five counts of child trafficking and five counts of rape, alternatively committing a sexual act with a child below the age of 16 years.
Koch told the court yesterday that although he understood very well the charges before him, he had nothing to do with what he is alleged of doing saying he had a good relationship with the said minors.
Speaking calmly through his interpreter, Koch said his house was too little to accommodate many people and the children would go as far as his door while they mostly sat outside.
He flatly rejected having any sexual conduct with any of the children some of which he said he only visited their house while he never invited any of them to his place.
“I shared food with them. I did not call these children without their parents’ consent and I never gave them gifts and tokens so that they keep coming to my house,” he said as his lawyer put it to him if he ever came as close as to touch their private parts.
The state has told the court that Koch threatened these girls if they told anyone of what he was doing to them while he gave them as little money as between N$2.50 and N$3.00 as well as hairspray, among other things.
An investigating officer identified as Warrant Officer Ndapunikwa Kakuna Haimbodi also took time to tell court that four of the girls had disclosed to her that the accused would call them to his little house in their area, gave them something to eat before shutting the door and touching their private parts.