In its closing argument in the rape, sexual assault and sexual grooming case of former primary school teacher Neil le Roux, the state described the actions of a “calculating” sexual predator who took advantage of his position of authority to commit sexual crimes against two student teachers and a 13-year-old schoolgirl.
State prosecutor Bonginkosi Mafa once again referred to Le Roux, 66, as a manipulative “wolf in sheepskin” who did the unthinkable.
He told East London magistrate Ignatius Kitching Le Roux had sexually groomed a young girl “to see how far he could push it.
“He was testing the waters and grooming her for bigger things. This was sexual assault which [could have] ended in rape,” said Mafa.
He argued that the accused, who once told the child she had “curves in all the right places”, had produced alcohol before sexually violating the student teachers who he mentored.
Mafa said that the woman whom he allegedly raped had experienced a “mind freeze” when the man she saw as a father figure, sexually assaulted and raped her during an after-hours meeting in his classroom where he had produced champagne, asked her to dance and switched off the lights.
“She said the accused was responsible for writing her assessment reports and this report would change her life.
“If she passed it she would be a fully-fledged teacher,” Mafa said. “She said that people would not have believed her … it had been a relief for her when the schoolgirl had come forward with charges because both student teachers felt they would not have been believed otherwise.”
“It is clear he violated all three females and the state submits it has proved this case beyond reasonable doubt,” said Mafa.
The defence, on the other hand, painted a picture of a man who engaged in consensual sex with another adult and whose interactions with the pupil, who regarded him as a father figure were “nothing sinister” and did not amount to criminal conduct.
These interactions included kissing, driving with his hand on her thigh, ear licking, embraces with his head on her chest and his hands on her buttocks and conversations about sexual matters such as being naked in a sleeping bag with her.
Defence advocate Neil Schoeman, instructed by attorney Roger Smith, argued in court that it was only once the girl had seen “therapists and counsellors” that she had described him as a gross, vile man.
The trial resumes for court judgment on May 31. — email@example.com