New Era Newspaper

New Era Epaper
Icon Collap
Home / Child pornography accused gets new lawyer

Child pornography accused gets new lawyer

2023-11-29  Roland Routh

Child pornography accused gets new lawyer

Defence attorney Milton Engelbrecht has been instructed by Legal Aid to defend Wickus Johann, Maree who is facing 75 counts of raping underage boys.

Other charges include filming pornographic material of the boys, and selling the content on the dark web. 

After Legal Aid lawyer Meriam Kandoni withdrew from the trial due to conflicting instructions, Windhoek High Court Judge Philanda Christiaan gave Maree another opportunity to apply for legal aid but made it clear it would be his last chance to get legal representation. 

Maree faces, among others, 24 rape charges, 18 child trafficking charges, and 10 charges of using a minor to produce pornography.

The court has already been furnished with a psychiatric report on the evaluation done on Maree. According to the report, Maree is fit to stand trial. The report also said that he had his full faculties when he committed the alleged offences. 

On those charges, the State is alleging that he sexually abused and exploited 15 teenage boys, while 13 of the boys he raped or indecently assaulted them. The
prosecution further claims he used 10 of the boys in making child pornography which he then sold on the dark web. 

Maree who worked as a private investigator and sports photographer was allegedly operating a website under the name ‘Boy Idols’. Through police investigations, it was discovered that Maree sold pictures of boys modelling clothes and swimwear. 

According to the police, videos obtained through investigations show minors performing various sexual acts in bathrooms. Other videos were filmed in toilets and swimming pools at sporting events in Windhoek. These videos were also allegedly sold on the internet. 

According to police investigator Nelius Becker who testified during Maree’s bail application in the lower court, his alleged criminal enterprise was well-organised and he tried to hide it. 

Maree allegedly made use of a ProtoMail server which is highly encrypted for his transactions over the dark web. The trail of emails, however, links him to a child pornographic business on the dark web. 

Becker said Maree’s work was however picked up by the Netherlands police who then alerted the Namibian authorities. The Netherlands police arrested one of their countrymen linked to Maree’s dealings, said Becker. 

Through their investigations, Becker said the police were able to identify and trace the victims from the school badges on the shirts they wore while being taped. 

Maree has since denied the allegations. 

The State is represented by deputy prosecutor general Palmer Khumalo.

2023-11-29  Roland Routh

Share on social media