Murder: baby thieves jailed

2011-11-01 00:00

TWO women who murdered their relative and threw her body in a pit toilet were sentenced to 15 and 20 years’ imprisonment by the high court in Durban yesterday.

Busisiwe Lucia Khoza (59) was sentenced to 15 years while her daughter, Thamsanqa Prudence Khoza (24), received a 20-year sentence.

The two women killed Nombuso Khoza on June 29 this year so that the younger woman could take the baby to raise. Her body was found in a pit toilet three months later, in Esigodini outside Pietermaritzburg.

Judge Yvonne Mbatha said the pair had time to change their plan, but they decided to continue with it.

The fact that they concealed the body was an aggravating factor, but the fact that they pleaded guilty and Busisiwe’s age led judge Mbatha to give a more lenient sentence to the older woman.

Early last month the two pleaded guilty in the high court in Pietermaritzburg and said they tried to convince Nombuso to give the child to Thamsanqa but she didn’t want to.

They then decided to kill her because they badly wanted her one-month-old child.

They said they planned this with her boyfriend, Linda Ndlovu, the father of the child, who also allegedly wanted Nombuso dead as he was upset that she had another boyfriend.

They alleged that they were called by Ndlovu to come to the couple’s house where they found Nombuso asleep with the child on the bed.

Thamsanqa, describing the act, said: “Ndlovu placed his hands around the deceased’s neck and suffocated her. The deceased tried to scream and I placed my hand over her mouth. After a minute or so the deceased stopped breathing. I thereafter took the deceased minor child to my place of residence.”

They wrapped Nombuso’s body in a bed sheet and left her body in the room during the day.

They returned late at night and dumped the body in a pit toilet.

Thamsanqa said she looked after the child as if it was her own.

The body was discovered by a family member who was cleaning at the house.

According to the postmortem report conducted on September 22, Khoza’s feet were tied together with a rope. There was a wound around her neck.

Ndlovu is in custody awaiting trial for the murder.

• mlondi.radebe@witness.co.za

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