By Own Correspondent
HARARE – A sex worker accused of sleeping with a 13-year-old boy she met on a dating website has launched a bail appeal at the High Court.
Lawyers for Precious Teya, 26, say she had no way of knowing that the alleged victim was a minor because of his stature. The lawyers also say the prosecution has failed to provide the boy’s birth certificate proving his age.
Justice Tawanda Chitapi will hear Teya’s appeal against denial of bail by a magistrate last week.
Her lawyer Moses Nyatsoma said: “The charges have been changed for the third time. She is now being charged with aggravated indecent assault, which to me shows how flimsy the charges are.”
Teya was initially charged with sleeping with having sexual a minor and then rape.
Nyatsoma maintains that the facts as captured by prosecutors are contradictory to what really transpired.
“We have a child who is in school and has a secret phone which nobody knows about. He lured the girl, of course a 26-year-old, for sex. The child is purported to be 13 but we have not seen any evidence to prove that,” the lawyer said.
“We have requested his birth certificate but we have not been furnished with the same to date. So as far as the age of the complainant is concerned, we are not sure.”
Nyatsoma said in the absence of a birth certificate, the boy should have gone for age estimation but the state has not bothered to do so.
He added: “If you look at the stature of the child, his height, the way he is built, you cannot tell by merely looking at him that he is 13 and there was no way my client could suspect he was a minor.
“If you also look at his own behaviour of going on a dating site, getting a sex worker, paying for the taxi, waiting by the gate, entertaining the sex worker inside the house, and whatever else that transpired… it is not consistent with a 13-year-old. In the absence of proof, we will not accept his age.”
A court last week heard that the 13-year-old boy planned an all-night sexual rendezvous with Teya at his parents’ home in Houghton Park. He allegedly sedated his siblings with sleeping tablets to avoid any disturbances.
He got a rude awakening when the prostitute handed him a US$120 service bill in the morning. Desperate, the Form 2 pupil at Watershed College in Marondera dashed next door to ask for a quick bailout, but neighbors called the police.