Verulam stepfather denies assaulting child

Verulam stepfather denies assaulting child

A Verulam man, accused of raping his 13-year-old stepdaughter, over a period of five years - has denied claims of assault and that he kept the child out of school.  

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The 45-year-old, who began testifying in the Durban High Court this week, faces a raft of charges - including rape and human trafficking. 

The man told the court that he moved to Durban after being kicked out of his Johannesburg home, which he and his stepchild shared with the mother of his biological child. 

READ: Judge slams police handling of Verulam rape case

He says he moved to Durban and not long after was asked to remove the girl from the home. He says that's when he brought the now 13-year-old to Durban.

Defence attorney, Thiagaraj Pillay asked if the man tried enrolling the girl in school. He said he did try, adding that two schools turned them away as they were full and it was the end of the year. 

Pillay asked the man about the relationship he shared with the girl. The stepfather broke down in tears and told the court that he took the child as his own, adding that he was put in a situation where he had to choose between his biological child and stepchild. He was then kicked out of his home. 

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Pillay asked the man if he ever assaulted the child. He denied this saying he was around 120 kgs at the time of his arrest. He said if he had assaulted the child, there would be visible bruising. 

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