Shaman kept woman in cave for 15 years, raped her

Representational image

Representational image

Police say that the girl first visited the locally-popular shaman, known as Jago, fifteen years ago with her family, and she caught his attention, before he chose to kidnap her months later.

BAJUGAN, Indonesia -An Indonesian woman was held captive in a cave for 15 years by a local spiritual healer who regularly raped her, police say.

Known as Jago, he allegedly kidnapped the woman when she was 13 and brainwashed her into believing he was possessed by a spirit or "jin", BBC reported.

To force her to stay, he told the girl that a jin (spirit) was watching over her whenever he left the cave, and would punish her if she attempted to escape.

Central Sulawesi police chief Muhammad Iqbal Alqudusy said the man had shown the girl a picture of a boy named Amrin "who she thought was her boyfriend".

Police rescued the woman, who is now at a safe house, after receiving a tip-off from a family member. "It is obvious that he was satisfying his lust".

Her father spent years trying to find his daughter but the shaman told the family that the girl had gone far away and would not return.

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The shaman is alleged to have hidden the woman in the cave during the day and to have had sex with her in a nearby hut at night.

According to the police statement, Jago sexually assaulted H for 15 years under the pretense of magic or witchcraft.

The man faces charges under Indonesia's child protection laws and if convicted faces up to 15 years in prison. His family members are also being investigated for failing to inform police.

The woman's sister was married to the shaman's son, according to the Jakarta Post.

Magdalena Sitorus, who heads Indonesia's National Commission on Violence Against Women, told the newspaper that her organization has not yet been asked to work on the case.

"Since the perpetrator was well-respected in the village, there is a possibility that there are other victims that have not yet come forward because they are afraid", Sitorus said.

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