Gabriella Engels is claiming she was assaulted and beaten by Zimbabwean First Lady Grace Mugabe in Johannesburg on Sunday evening. The 20-year-old model says Mugabe attacked her with an extension cord in a hotel room in the suburb of Sandton.

Zimbabwean President's wife attacks South African model

According to Engels, she was at the Capital 20 West Hotel with a friend to visit the Mugabe’s two sons, Robert and Chatunga, whom she had apparently met on Saturday through a mutual friend. She said on arrival at the hotel one of Mugabe’s bodyguards had asked them to wait in a separate room.

While waiting, Engels said Mugabe entered the room and began to beat her. According to Engels, at the time she was unaware who was attacking her, but that she had an electrical extension cord in her hand and started repeatedly beating her.

According to Engels, Mugabe then accused her of living with her two sons and kept beating her with the electrical plug on the cord numerous times. She said there was blood all over her arms and hair. Engels said she had no idea why this was happening to her and that she had to crawl out of the room to escape the assault.

Meanwhile she said Mugabe’s bodyguards stood by, watching but not doing anything to help her.

Model lays assault charge against Grace Mugabe

Hotel staff then escorted Engels from the hotel and she visited the Sandton police station to lay an assault charge, but an officer recommended she first seek medical attention.

On Monday Engels opened an assault case against Mugabe, although according to a report by News24, Gauteng police would not verify whether the assault case had been opened.

According to Engels neither Mugabe nor her sons have contacted her since the incident, adding she is having problems dealing with the trauma of the attack.

She said having a scar on her face could ruin her career as a model.

IOL reports that Clayson Monyela, a spokesman for the South African Department of International Relations, told them that despite her position, Mugabe could face prosecution for the assault. Reportedly diplomatic immunity only applies if Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe’s wife was in the country on official business. However, Mugabe was in South Africa for medical treatment to her foot following a road accident in Harare.

News24 attempted to contact Mugabe’s sons on Monday, without success and reportedly attempts to contact George Charamba, the Zimbabwean First Lady’s spokesperson, were also unsuccessful.

As reported by Newsweek, Sizakele Nkosi-Malobane, the Gauteng Community Safety head, told local reporters that no one has the right to abuse women, irrespective of their situation in life.

He said someone in Mugabe’s position was supposed to lead an exemplary life and be a role model for young women.

That report quoted the country’s police minister, Fikile Mbalula, as confirming Tuesday that Mugabe had handed herself into police and was expected in court on Tuesday afternoon.