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80 men are on trial in South Africa on rape charges against eight women.

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More than 80 men appeared in court on Monday, accused of gang raping eight women and robbing a video production crew in the South African town of Krugersdorp, west of Johannesburg.

Following the rapes and robberies near the abandoned mine, the men were apprehended at an abandoned mining site.

The suspects are allegedly illegal miners known as zama-zamas who dig for gold in the many closed mine shafts in the Johannesburg area. According to local reports, many of the illegal miners are foreigners. According to local residents, zama-zama gangs of illegal miners are also to blame for widespread crime in the area.

According to police, the gang rapes occurred when a crew filming a music video at one of the abandoned mines was attacked by armed men on Thursday last week.

“The crew of 22 people — 12 women and 10 men — were busy filming a music video when they were allegedly attacked by a group of armed men clad in blankets,” said Lt. Gen. Elias Mawela, Police Commissioner for Gauteng province.

“The suspects ordered everyone to lay down before raping eight of the women and robbing them of their belongings before fleeing the scene,” he said. All of the crew’s video equipment was stolen. According to him, police are looking into 32 counts of rape.

80 men are on trial in South Africa on rape charges against eight women.

Women protest outside the Krugersdorp, South Africa, Magistrates Court Monday, Aug. 1, 2022. More than 80 men suspected of the gang rapes of eight women and armed robbery of a video production crew in the ming town, west of Johannesburg appeared in court on Monday. (AP Photo/Shiraaz Mohamed)

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