Sex assault accused killed by truck on Bruce Hwy
A PROMINENT psychologist accused of sexually assaulting three female patients, including a teenager, during appointments at a northern beaches clinic a decade ago has died before appearing in Manly Court.
Pieter Jozua Rossouw, 62, who was facing 13 indecent and sexual assault charges stretching back to 2004, was killed by a truck at Curra on February 2, The Gympie Times has learned today.
Rossouw had appeared in Brisbane Magistrates Court three days earlier, on January 30, after police from the Northern Beaches Local Area Command issued a warrant for his arrest.
His lawyer told the court that Rossouw denied the allegations.
Rossouw was arrested by Queensland police at his home in Brisbane.
The charges related to allegations he repeatedly assaulted a 17-year-old female patient while he was employed as a psychologist at a private clinic in Avalon in 2004.
Two other female patients, aged in their 30s and 40s, also told police in 2009 that Rossouw had allegedly assaulted them during sessions at the clinic.
Rossouw was facing 13 charges of aggravated indecent assault, aggravated sexual assault and aggravated incite act of indecency.
He was killed by a B-double truck on the Bruce Highway near Gympie, about 185km north of Brisbane.
The psychologist's car was found nearby.
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Queensland police investigated the death and have prepared a report for the coroner.
AAP reported Queensland police prosecutor Matt Kahler told Brisbane Magistrates Court that Rossouw was charged with offences that carried a maximum penalty of 20 years in jail because he was in a position of authority when the alleged incidents occurred.
"The victims at the time were very distraught," Sgt Kahler told the court. "They trusted him and he abused that trust."
Sgt Kahler said Rossouw was still a registered psychologist at the time of his arrest.
But defence lawyer Craig Pratt said in court that his client had not practised since 2009, was "somewhat retired" and now only held workshops for professionals in the field.
"He is an academic with a distinguished career," he said.
Mr Pratt told the court Rossouw denied the allegations and would fight them.
NSW police officers appeared in court in an attempt to extradite Rossouw, who had been living in Queensland for eight years, back to Manly.
But magistrate Paul Kluck agreed to release him on bail on the proviso he report to police daily, surrender his Australian and South African passports and live at his home at St Lucia.
Mr Kluck also ordered that Rossouw appear at Manly Local Court last Monday.
When it was learned Rossouw was deceased, police asked Manly magistrate Christopher Longley to adjourn the mater until February 16, where it is expected the case will be finalised.