Rapist sentenced to life in prison

By Drum Digital
15 October 2014

The Bloemfontein Sexual Offences Court has sentenced a 27-year-old man to life in prison for raping a 19-year-old woman.

The Bloemfontein Sexual Offences Court on Wednesday sentenced a 27-year-old man to life in prison for raping a 19-year-old woman, the NPA said. "Magistrate Leavit Mkansi sentenced Realeboha Mathews Dipholo to life sentence for rape and another 25 years imprisonment for robbery with aggravating circumstances," National Prosecuting Authority's Phaladi Shuping said in a statement. The court heard that on the day of the incident, the victim was walking with her brother from church around 8pm when they were accosted by Dipholo and his friend. The brother tried to fight the perpetrators but ran away when Dipholo took out a knife.

"Dipholo forced the victim to a nearby bushy area and raped her," Shuping said.

"She was also robbed of her cellular phone. The brother of the victim came back with other community members and they found Dipholo busy raping the victim. Dipholo and his friend managed to run away but were arrested later at a nearby tavern," he said.

Dipholo's friend was acquitted because the woman could not identify him.

Arguing in aggravation of sentence, State prosecutor Emmanuel Ali asked the magistrate to sentence Dipholo to life in prison as he had two previous convictions of robbery and attempted rape but even those convictions did not dissuade him from being involved in criminal activities.

"Magistrate Mkansi was convinced that the State had proved its case beyond reasonable doubt and the defence did not convince the court that there were compelling and exceptional circumstances for him to deviate from sentencing the accused to a minimum prescribed sentence and he subsequently sentenced him to life imprisonment for rape and 25 years for robbery with aggravating circumstances," he said.

-SAPA

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