A self-styled prophet in Zimbabwe was taken into custody Monday for allegedly raping a woman inside a car after threatening her with a live snake.

The woman had gone to the accused’s shrine to offer prayer on May 11. When she arrived, the accused, identified as 38-year-old Luckson Mapurisa, told her they will have to go to a nearby place for the prayers. The woman agreed, and the two drove there, media outlet IHarare reported.

Upon arrival, the accused parked the car and immediately jumped to the backseat where the woman was sitting. He then began touching her inappropriately and when she resisted, he pulled out a huge snake from his bag and threatened the victim before raping her.

The woman confided to her cousin, who asked her to file a complaint. On May 29, the victim reported the matter to the police and two days later, the accused was taken into custody.

During interrogation, the accused confessed to the crime and told the officers he had inherited the reptile from the grandfather.

Mapurisa appeared in court Tuesday and was charged with rape. His bail was rejected and he will now remain in police custody till June 15, The Herald reported.

Following the incident, the police urged the public to not meet church leaders or prophets alone, and to keep family members informed when seeking guidance from them. An investigation was ongoing to see if there were other victims.

Last month, a self-proclaimed godman in the northern Indian state of Rajasthan was arrested for allegedly raping four women devotees while they were staying in his monastery. The abuse came to light when one of the victims told her husband about it as he was planning to take their daughter to the monastery. She told him the accused injected her with an intoxicant and raped her after she got giddy. The woman then shared her story with two family members who had stayed at the monastery with her. The family members also opened up about similar experiences, following which they filed a police complaint. A day later, another victim came forward and filed a complaint.

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