Rape charges could knock local boxer out of Olympics

On the ropes… Namibian boxer Jonas Junias (in blue), the country’s flag carrier at the 2016 Olympic Games, has been arrested in Rio de Janeiro on suspicion of rape.


One of Namibia’s medal hopefuls at the ongoing Olympics in Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, boxer Jonas Junius, aged 22, found himself in hot water with South American law authorities yesterday over allegations of rape at the Athletes Village.

Junias, who was also the Namibian flag carrier at the opening ceremony of this year’s Summer Olympics, was yesterday arrested on suspicion of rape, following a claim made by a housekeeper in the Athletes Village in the West Zone of Rio, the Brazilian police have confirmed.

According to the alleged victim, Junius allegedly took her and tried to forcefully kiss her. She further accused the Namibian boxer of having offered her money in exchange for sex.

The purported victim then ran away and went straight to the police to report the alleged incident, whereupon Jonas was promptly arrested.

By late yesterday, Junius was due to be transferred to the jail complex of Bangu, said to be a maximum-security prison situated in the middle-class neighbourhood of the West Zone in Rio de Janeiro.

Unless Junius is able to get a reprieve or pardon soon, the boxer will not be able to enter the ring for his scheduled bout against French opponent Hassan Anzille on Thursday.

Jesse Schickerling, vice-president of the Namibia National Olympic Committee (NNOC) and head of the Namibian delegation to the 2016 Olympics, was late yesterday quoted in the local press as saying it was too early for the NNOC to comment on the allegations and that they were locked in marathon meetings with the IOC to negotiate the boxer’s release.

The case of boxer Junius comes less than a week after a Moroccan boxer was also arrested on accusations of rape in the Athletes Village.

Just last Friday Moroccan boxer Hassan Sada was also arrested on suspicion of sexually molesting two housekeepers in the Athletes Village.

He denied committing the crime of rape. Police reported that Sada called the two women, pretending to be seeking information, but when the workers came into his room they found he had other intentions, as the boxer apparently started to fondle the housekeepers’ private parts, including touching their breasts.

Any form of sexual sensation practiced without consent is considered rape, in accordance with the interpretation of Brazilian law on sex crimes.


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