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Somerset East rocked by worst case in town's history

Lukas William Rudman outside the Somerset-East court

Siyabonga Sesant


The small town of Somerset East in the Eastern Cape has been rocked by several claims of children who have allegedly been sexually assaulted by a self-proclaimed pastor.

Sixty-four-year-old Lukas William Rudman faces at least a dozen allegations, including rape, sexual assault, and grooming of young children.

Algoa FM News exclusively learned that Rudman, whose alleged victims are as young as 11, would lure the children to his house and purportedly entice them with money, shoes, and food.

Several sources, including an alleged victim’s mother, told Algoa FM News that Rudman is a sexual predator and had faced similar charges in 2012 in De Aar when he allegedly claimed to have been in a relationship with a then-12-year-old girl.

That case which was thrown out of court has since been re-enrolled.

He was then arrested again in October last year and is currently out on bail of R1000. 

Sources close to the investigation say the children have all been sent to places of safety in Gqeberha.

On Friday Rudman was formally charged with 10 additional charges, including three of rape, two of sexual assault, and five human trafficking claims. 

Angry Somerset East residents have described this case as one of the worst in the town’s history referring to Rudman as "a monster."

Clutching both hands and fidgeting in the dock wearing a blue top and jeans, Rudman appeared nervous but managed to maintain a faint smile.

The accused paid no attention to the public gallery where some of his alleged victims’ families and supporters were seated.

The matter was postponed to the 28th of November and his bail was extended.