n South African Journal of Criminal Justice - The Bloemfontein Court for Sexual Offences : perceptions of its functioning from the perspective of victims, their families and the professionals involved

Volume 17, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 1011-8527
  • E-ISSN: 1996-2118



The current study investigates the degree to which various parties perceive the Court for Sexual Offences in Bloemfontein to be making good on its commitment to reduce secondary victimization and provide improved justice for the victims of sexual offences. The article provides a general overview of the socio-political context in which the court was established and continues to function. The perceptions of the victims of sexual offences, their family members and various professionals involved with the court are then elicited in order to evaluate its functioning. The court was found to be successful in reducing secondary victimization and providing improved justice for those affected by sex crimes. However, a shortcoming was identified with regard to the system's ability to deal effectively with the victims following the conclusion of their trials. Directions for further research in this area are also explored.

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