ONGWEDIVA - After a failed bid to appeal his rape conviction in the High Court, northern businessman Sindano Hango is now set to petition the Supreme Court.
Hango’s lawyer Kadhila Amoomo said in a communication addressed to Oshakati regional court prosecutor that Hango has a right to file a petition to the chief justice for leave to appeal within 21 days.
“Seeing that our client’s application was struck from the roll on 18 June 2021, our computation is that our client has until 10 July to ensure that a petition has been filed with the Supreme Court,” the communication reads.
Hango was convicted of rape in February this year in the Oshakati High Court for raping his cousin in 2014.
He was initially acquitted of rape in 2019 in the regional court by magistrate Leopoldt Hangalo.
However, the State successfully appealed against his acquittal.
Hango’s lawyers in the communication also indicated that they will be launching an application for a further postponement of the matter to enable their client to finalise his petition.
He is scheduled to appear in court today.
Hango’s application to appeal his rape conviction in the Supreme Court was turned down by the Oshakati High Court.
The matter was struck from the roll, and was referred back to the magistrate’s court for sentencing.
Acting Judge Danie Small ruled during the judgement on 18 June 2021 that leave to appeal prior to sentence is only allowed in exceptional circumstances where a grave injustice is likely to ensue.
Small said the court concluded that it could not allow a piecemeal appeal, or entertain the application for leave to appeal in the absence of exceptional circumstances.
The judge further said the court’s refusal to entertain the application prior to the imposition of the sentence does not prevent the re-enrolment of the application for leave to appeal once the regional court has sentenced the applicant, should he wish to persist with the appeal and the application for leave to appeal.
Sindano is also accused of bribing the complainant with N$10 000 to allegedly withdraw the rape charge.
The court heard Hango sent family members to talk her into withdrawing the case in exchange for that amount.
The initial investigating officer also tried to talk the woman into withdrawing the case.
It has been the victim’s testimony that Hango forced himself onto her by holding her arms to the back while one hand forcefully removed her jeans and the underpants she was wearing at the time.
During the scuffle, the victim says she fell to the floor and then fled to her room, where Hango followed her, threw her to the bed and forcefully penetrated her.
The victim at the time also told the court that she informed several family members about the rape.
However, some attempted to talk her out of registering a case, while others advised her to pursue it.
Hangalo said at the time of acquitting Hango that after considering the evidence presented in court, he was not convinced that a rape was committed.
Hango had maintained in his own defence during the trial in the regional court that the whole act was fabricated, and that it was the victim’s idea that he should give her money to take care of her personal needs.