South Africa Case Postponed of Practitioner Doing Forced Abortion on Woman

International   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Dec 9, 2009   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

South Africa Case Postponed of Practitioner Doing Forced Abortion on Woman

by Steven Ertelt Editor
December 9
, 2009

Johannesburg, South Africa ( — The owner of an abortion business in Johannesburg appeared in court yesterday in a case that saw a woman accuse him of forcing her to have an abortion. Meriam Serefi, who runs The Rock Health Clinic abortion business, appeared in court on a hearing, posted bail, and left.

Serefi has been charged with doing a forced abortion on a 17-year-old girl who said she was five months pregnant at the time.

Serefi is now out on R5000 bail, the Sowetan newspaper reports.

According to police, the teenager says her boyfriend, who is a police constable at the Wedela police station, took her to the abortion center under false pretenses — saying he was taking her to have an ultrasound done.

“It looks as if the boyfriend had made prior arrangements with the clinic to perform the abortion,” the unnamed young woman’s mother told the newspaper. “On arrival my daughter was given abortion medicine. The nurses only told her about the abortion when she complained of labor pains. We then decided to open a case.”

“What hurt me most was when my daughter told police that the nurses had assaulted her because she refused to have her child killed. One of the nurses inserted a hand inside her and pulled the foetus out,” she said.

Three nurses who work at the abortion center were also arrested on Friday, the newspaper indicated, and they include Anna Chakela, Ntshidisi Sedikane and Pona Mathibe.

The mother told Sowetan that her daughter’s boyfriend has offered to compensate her for the death of her baby.

Sowetan reported that the nurses were charged with murder but saw those charges dismissed after Serefi’s lawyer Given Mulaudzi handed him over to police.

Serefi faces the charge of "illegal termination of pregnancy" and appeared yesterday before a magistrate judge. Prosecutors wanted to continue investigating the case while postponing bail,but Mulaudzi got the woman abortion practitioner out of that with a promise to surrender her passport.

A court will hold another hearing on the case on February 1.

This South African case comes after one in the United States, which saw a Michigan teenager recently file a lawsuit against abortion practitioner Alberto Hodari after she says he forced her to have an abortion last year.

Tom Pabst, the attorney for the 20-year-old woman, filed papers with Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton on behalf of Caitlin Bruce seeking criminal charges.

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