Police officers in South Africa are hunting three female rapists who allegedly drugged, kidnapped, and gang-raped a 23-year-old man over the course of three days in a hotel room.
The victim encountered his assailants after boarding a minibus on Solomon Mahlangu Drive in eastern Pretoria on the night of Friday 26 May. The communal taxi already had three women on board, who allegedly proceeded to assault him.
Provincial police spokesperson Captain Kay Makhubele confirmed the details of the alleged crime over the phone to Broadly.
The victim was subsequently taken to an apartment in Pretoria by his alleged assailants, Makhubele says. It is believed the victim was drugged prior to the attack with "a substance which made him have sexual intercourse and to be active with these girls." The South African publication Times Live reports that he was injected with a substance before passing out.
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In comments to the Daily Mail, Captain Colette Weilbach said that the victim awoke from his drugged stupor to find himself in an unfamiliar room with a single bed. He was then allegedly made to drink an energy drink before being raped multiple times over the course over three days. After being dumped semi-naked in a nearby field, the victim managed to flag down help.
"After they left him, he opened a case with Pretoria police, where the case is under investigation," Makhubele told Broadly. "So far we are still trying to trace the suspects." He confirms that the victim did not know his assailants prior to the alleged attack, and that no one has yet been arrested.
While the fact of the gender of the victim and his attackers makes this case extremely unusual, the crime is not. Rape is at epidemic levels in South Africa, which has some of the highest levels of sexual violence in the world. While statistics vary, 42,596 rapes were reported to South African police in 2016. According to one 2011 study, 37.4 percent of men in Gauteng province (where Pretoria is situated) admitted to being perpetrators of sexual violence. Although women make up the majority of rape victims in South Africa—as they are around the world—there are plenty of men who suffer sexual violence at the hands of women. According to one wide-ranging US survey, two-thirds of men who report sexual victimization say that their attacker was female.
For now, the search for the 23-year-old victim's assailants goes on, and Captain Makhubele is optimistic. "We hope the information we are gathering will help us to find the suspects," he goes on.