Question posted in the General Law category relating to Gauteng
Question value: R 100.00
I would like to know if there is a way to press charges in South Africa for the following situation: a friend of mine has been on holiday with a married man with whom she has a platonic relationship as it is far distance. The holiday was planned to close things or give them direction. During the whole week before and the week itself, he promised and insisted that he would leave his wife and be with her, and she has proof of that. Under those conditions she has accepted to sleep with him. Extremely shortly after this encounter, he tells her it wasn't true. I believe she was deceived but we don't know if this is considered illegal in SA and if there is anything that can be charged. Thx
Answer to the Question
Hi there and thank you for your question,
Unfortunately no, it is not possible for your friend to either press criminal charges or institute a civil claim against this man for lying to her about his intentions of leaving his wife to be with your friend, and on that basis she slept with him. There is nothing in our statutes (Acts) or in our common law (cases in court) or in our legal history (precedent) which will allow such a claim.
The claim is not criminal because he didn't force himself on her. i.e. rape. He basically convinced her of something, and she then slept with him. There is no criminal aspect here, just a devious lying person.
Any claim which your friend MIGHT have would therefore be a civil claim, but I can't see how one would go about claiming this. There is no financial loss to your friend. It is more of an emotional pain that she has suffered as a result of what happened. But how do you quantify such a loss in Rands and cents. Also, such a claim would need to be based on some sort of legal duty - which I don't think exists.
In short, I don't think that your friend will be successful in any criminal or civil claim - especially if she knew that the man was already married and that he was cheating on his wife.
What your friend might be aware of is that the wife might try to sue your friend for "breaking up" their marriage ... so perhaps she should not make too much of this, otherwise she might find herself in a court case with the wife!
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