17 March 2017, MWENEZI - A 33-year-old self-styled prophet of the Paradise Church allegedly raped and impregnated a 17-year-old woman as part of a healing session after the woman's family members had consulted the 'prophet' to heal the woman's swollen legs.
Gilbert Chauke, who comes from Villi-villi village under Chief Chitanga, was not formally charged when he appeared before the Mwenezi Magistrate Honest Musiwa last Friday but was remanded in custody for the alleged rape that occurred in November last year.
It is alleged that the girl had developed an inflammation of the legs and her family decided to engage Chauke.
The 'prophet' reportedly agreed to visit the girl's homestead in Tafara village under Chief Neshuro.
After praying for the girl, Chauke is said to have instructed girl's family members to go into the bush for more prayers while he and the girl remained at home for 'further healing'.
After they had left, Chauke instructed the girl to lie down and allegedly raped her before threatening the girl with some strange objects he used in his 'prophesies'. He is said to have warned the girl that if she reports the matter, she would die.
Chauke is said to have used the same modus operandi to rape the girl on several other occasions. The matter only came to light this year after the family members noticed the girl was pregnant.
The suspect, who was already on the run after receiving a tipoff that police detectives were after him, was arrested last week.
Willard Chasi appeared for the State.local