THE Â Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid) is investigating Â more than 60 rape cases involving police officers, shocking legislators.
According to a document tabled by Ipid on Wednesday morning at a parliamentary briefing of Â the police portfolio committee, 66 rapes by police officers between April and September this year, compared to 53 rapes during the same six-month period last year.
Of the 66 rapes, 25 were “by police officer(s) on duty”.
In a statement later on Wednesday, issued on behalf of chairman Francois Beukman, the committee said it was shocked by the number of rape cases involving the police, and such officers did not belong in the SA Police Service.
Beukman had ordered SAPS management “take an uncompromising or strict stance on the matter”.
It was important for Ipid to make proposals that would ensure harsh sentences for police officers found guilty.
In a separate statement, Freedom Front Plus MP Pieter Groenewald, a member of the committee, said the number of complaints of rapes being perpetrated by police officers had increased by 25 percent.
“What is even more worrying is that the number of rapes perpetrated by police members on duty has increased by 56 percent.
“This means that these rapists think they are above the law just because they are members of the police, and they are abusing their power granted them Â through their positions,” he said.
A number of Zimbabwean women, especially illegal immigrants have complained of being sexually abused by police officers to avoid deportation. -Â Sapa