Russian national Alexander Krylov, 56, and his Namibian counterpart Anna Katrina Engelbrecht, 28 will plead to charges of alleged child trafficking and the rape of several underage girls when their trial starts today.
The trial is set to run until 14 February.
It would have started yesterday, but prosecutor Palmer Khumalo asked Windhoek High Court Acting Judge Claudia Claasen to allow him time to organize the victim friendly court, as the witnesses are vulnerable.
The victim-friendly court allows for vulnerable victims of crime to testify through closed-circuit television out of the eyesight of the alleged perpetrators.
Lawyer Marinus Scholtz, who will defend both accused also informed the judge that he would make certain admissions on behalf of his clients.
Engelbrecht allegedly recruited the five victims, aged between 15 and 16, for Krylov and brought them to him for alleged sexual intercourse.
Krylov is a marine pilot at Namport, and was apparently out at sea while the case was being investigated before his arrest.
It is alleged Krylov committed the sexual acts with the five girls during 2017 until June 2018.
Three of the victims are pupils at Swakopmund and Walvis Bay schools, while two are school dropouts.
Krylov, also known as “Sir Alex” was arrested in October 2017 at Walvis Bay after a month’s investigation was launched by the police.
His alleged sexual crimes came to light in September after a parent of one of the minors noticed her daughter had been going missing for several days without a valid explanation.
The girl later confessed that Krylov picked them up at Kuisebmond and took them to his flat in town, where they allegedly engaged in various sexual acts during the weekend.
Krylov, who has been living in Namibia for more than 15 years, has admitted to paying N$100 to the girls in exchange for sex.
He also said that he was not aware at the time that the girls were under aged. According to him, he met the girls through his co-accused and was told that they were all above 16-years of age.
Krylov was also arrested in 2008, for allegedly kidnapping four minor girls that were playing in a street in Kuisebmond.
He was alleged to have driven the girls to a nearby service station, where he was seen buying them some sweets.
However, swift action from vigilant residents, who spotted him on several occasions with young girls, tipped off the police, who then followed his vehicle and arrested him.
He was granted bail of N$1 000 at the time, but the case against him was later withdrawn.
Both Krylov and Engelbrecht are free on bail.
2020-02-04 07:22:45 | 17 days ago