BOKSBURG, South Africa (AP) — A court in South Africa postponed the rape and sexual assault case against former Grand Slam doubles champion Bob Hewitt until May 9 after prosecutors mislaid paperwork, Hewitt's lawyer said on Friday.
Lawyer Alwyn Griebenow told The Associated Press that prosecutors would have to reapply for the charges of rape and indecent assault against Hewitt to be centralized so they can be heard in the same court.
The 73-year-old Hewitt, who was suspended from tennis' international hall of fame in 2012 over the allegations, is accused of two counts of rape and one count of indecent assault of underage girls he coached in the 1980s and 1990s.
Two of the offenses are alleged to have occurred in Boksburg, a city east of Johannesburg. The third allegedly took place at the Sun City casino resort in northern South Africa, a different court jurisdiction and the reason why prosecutors need to apply for the charges to be brought together.
Hewitt didn't appear at Boksburg Magistrate's Court on Friday and has missed all three preliminary hearings citing ill health. Griebenow said he was hopeful a trial date would be set on May 9 and he would receive indictment papers.
"Well I'm praying for that. We've been hoping for a trial date all along," he said.
A spokesperson for South Africa's National Prosecuting Authority didn't immediately respond to telephone calls and messages seeking comment.
The Australia-born Hewitt was inducted into the Rhode Island-based hall of fame as a master of the doubles craft after winning nine Grand Slam doubles titles and six mixed doubles titles in the 1960s and 1970s. He played with greats like Arthur Ashe and Billie Jean King.
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