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Doctor Won't Testify To Defend Church Pastor In 46-Year-Old Rape Case

Church pastor accused of rape sees doctor change his mind on giving testimony.

06/12/2016 16:12 SAST | Updated 06/12/2016 16:48 SAST
incamerastock / Alamy
At the time, the accused was not a pastor, but a member of the Emmanuel Pinkster Sendings Kerk (Emmanuel Mission Church).

A doctor who was supposed to testify for a church pastor accused of raping a girl 46 years ago, chose not to do so, leading to the defence closing its case in the Parow Regional Court on Tuesday.

Carl Baron, 77, has pleaded not guilty to two counts of rape.

The woman, who was eight at the time, was allegedly raped outside the University of the Western Cape while on her way home from school, and then again at a church picnic in Oudtshoorn in 1970.

At the time Baron was not a pastor, but a member of the Emmanuel Pinkster Sendings Kerk (Emmanuel Mission Church). On Tuesday, Baron stood in the dock tilting his head to hear better as magistrate Amanda van Leeve heard from the defence that the doctor originally set to testify for him had changed his mind.

"He gave a lot of excuses, but has now indicated that he does not want to testify," said Johannes Grobbelaar, for Baron.

Final arguments would be heard on January 19.

Timelines

The defence has drawn on timelines and places the accuser can remember and has researched recorded events and the construction of buildings as part of its efforts to verify or disprove statements.

During the last court appearance, Baron's friend, retired fellow pastor Samuel Michaels, 66, denied events that were put to him.

Prosecutor Dercia Rabie read from the accuser's statement, in which she said Michaels would remember what happened.

"I told the big people about it when I was a child," Rabie read. "When I began with the case, I found out how much people can lie. I found out that pastors can lie to you. Michaels is lying."

But Michaels denied he had known about what happened. "Nobody told me about it until a case was lodged with the police," he said.

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