A high court judge in Pretoria has ordered a grandmother, who allegedly exposed her five grandchildren to sexual molestation after “kidnapping” them, to immediately return the children to their parents.
Judge Billy Mothle on Tuesday set aside an order granted by a Brits Children’s Court magistrate in March placing the five children, aged between two and 11, in the care of their grandmother, who lives in Hartbeespoort.
The judge ordered the five children be immediately returned to their parents in the Western Cape, and that the Children’s Court in the Western Cape should continue with its investigation into the best interests of the children.
The children’s father said in court papers there was evidence of previous sexual molestation involving the family of his wife’s mother, in whose care the children had been placed.
He was especially concerned about the grandmother’s links to her cousin, one of the accused in the notorious Pretoria North pornography syndicate matter.
He said the grandmother had “kidnapped” the children after having him and his wife unlawfully arrested and the magistrate who placed them in her care had “legalised” the kidnapping without the involvement of a social worker and without hearing from the children or their parents. Their one daughter was autistic and the youngest was breastfeeding when they were taken away.
The father said they only became aware of the Children’s Court proceedings in Brits after they were arrested for failing to appear in court. He said his wife’s mother had lied to the magistrate by claiming the children were being neglected. It appeared she wanted to conceal evidence of the children’s sexual molestation and to prevent the molesters from being prosecuted by taking control of the children.
His wife still blamed her mother for allowing her uncle to molest her as a child and then letting her two step-children molest their eldest son. He said they were a happy family until his wife got very ill and they had to live with her mother for a while. They moved to the Cape to get away from the abusers of their children, he added.