News24

Teens jailed for 'orgy of violence'

2011-11-30 12:06

Pietermaritzburg - Three juveniles were each sentenced to 20 years’ imprisonment on Tuesday for their part in an “orgy of violence” during which they stabbed three men to death and attempted to murder two others in Mpophomeni, Howick.

They committed the murders while carrying out four armed robberies on the night of August 27.

The youths, aged 17, 15 and 16 years at the time, pleaded guilty to nine charges before KwaZulu Natal Judge President Chiman Patel in September.

Judge Patel said that when considering the appropriate sentences for the youths the court had to take into account constitutional considerations.

These stipulate that a child should be detained only for the shortest appropriate time.

Furthermore, in terms of the Child Justice Act, a court cannot impose a prison sentence in excess of 25 years on a juvenile.

“I hope that the three of you will apologise to the families of the deceased in this matter because all three of you will one day be able to come out from prison and return to society.

“But they have lost loved ones who can never return,” he admonished the accused during sentencing.

Murmurs of agreement rippled through the public gallery.

Alcohol


After sentence was passed the parents of two of the victims, Simphiwe Mnikathi, 26, and Steven Madlala, 34, said that although they are distraught over the deaths of their children, they are satisfied with the sentences passed on the killers.

“The court has explained that it is because of the age of the accused [that they were not given life sentences]” said Madlala’s father, MG Ntombela, who was with his wife, Nomusa.

Sibongile Mnikathi, mother of Simphiwe Mnikathi, tearfully nodded in agreement.

Judge Patel said social workers’ reports on the three accused showed that they seemed to be well-behaved before their crime spree.

However he said he decried in the “strongest language their consumption of alcohol” on the night in question.

The juveniles said in statements when they pleaded guilty that they had been drinking at KwaHaza.

It was then that they decided to go to Mpophomeni to “find victims that we could rob”.

Armed with knives, they walked along a footpath and came across their first victim, Muntu Shelembe, and robbed him of his cellphone.

When Wiseman Mkhize arrived on the scene and tried to help Shelembe they stabbed him to death and took his cellphone.

Shortly afterwards the trio encountered Nkululeko Nkabini, surrounded him and threatened him with knives while demanding his valuables.

After he had handed over his cellphone and charger to the group he started shouting for help from a nearby homestead and the accused fled.

On their way home they encountered four adult men whom they also attacked and “stabbed indiscriminately”.

Two of the men, Steven Madlala and Simphiwe Mnikathi, were killed and the other two, Dumisani Zondi and Mondli Ndlovu, fled.

The youths searched Madlala and Mnikathi as they lay wounded on the ground and removed a cellphone and tracksuit pants before fleeing.

Comments
  • Adrian - 2011-11-30 12:17

    F that, put them away for ever!

      Ann - 2011-11-30 12:47

      What a charming bunch of individuals. They do not deserve to have any rights at all! Agreed Adrian - put them away forever. Better still hang them!!!! Let them be an example to everyone.

      John - 2011-11-30 12:56

      will be able to be released back into society,waste of tax money hang them

      rbphiri - 2011-11-30 13:17

      F that, I wish we had a death penalty, these idiots knew what they were doing, alcohol is not to blame, they took peoples lives.

      Activity Bookings - 2011-11-30 13:24

      RPhiri -- well said, I hate it when people put blame on something else except themselves.

      Warren - 2011-11-30 14:23

      If 3 murders & 5 armed robberies gets you 20 years just how bad do you have to be to get the maximum of 25 years?????????????????

      Squeegee - 2011-11-30 14:40

      Warren, Warren, Warren. Read the flippin story!

      Sharkshoot - 2011-11-30 17:32

      Prodigies of the new ANC generation.

      Paul - 2011-11-30 22:39

      NO NO ADRIAN HANG THEM / FIRING SQUAD. What a lot of crap putting them in prison, amazing the hypocrisy of the system in SA. As long as you are disadvantaged (or have a good excuse) etc the state has to be lenient, why they feel somehow obligated to give them lighter sentences because they young. OH GIVE THEM A CHANCE....WHY? WHITE/BLACK/GREEN/POOR/RICH I DON'T CARE. If they are old enough to murder they are old enough for hanging. These animals should forfeit their rights as they denied their victims their fundamental rights to life. END OF STORY!!!! What the point of having rights when perpetrators of heinous crimes are rewarded with leniency is the state going to compensate the victims family because they clearly cannot protect your rights? The fact that these boys at 15,16,17 have money to go drinking, show that this was not an act of survival, desperation, or any kind of necessity. This was premeditated and self serving killings ... I DON'T CARE WHAT YOUR CIRCUMSTANCE IN LIFE IS, EVERYONE OF ANY UPBRINGING KNOWS RIGHT FROM WRONG.. "Lady Justice" is blind. Clearly at this junction in history she is in bed daydreaming about Political Correctness and Public Opinion as apposed Justice. The guys deserve the rope. Anti death penalty is for those who always expect another chance pity murder victims don't have that privilege.

  • Omnivore - 2011-11-30 12:24

    I don't think alcohol should be used as a mitigating factor - it IS in SA courts, unless you were driving. These kids are clearly sociopaths, a condition for which there is no cure. I say, put them out of their misery because they WILL re-offend.

  • Jaco - 2011-11-30 12:26

    wow, what is happening to us!? very sad.

  • lovellt - 2011-11-30 12:27

    If you are old enough to do the crime, you are old enough to do the time

  • Kaizer - 2011-11-30 12:32

    nature of our fellow countrymen to the fore i see.....

  • martijnvreugde - 2011-11-30 12:43

    wow... clearly sociopaths to kill with such ease, and now they are off to get a 25 year criminal education. This does not bode well...

  • ivan.coetzee2 - 2011-11-30 12:43

    WTH.......

  • wayne.kukard - 2011-11-30 12:52

    If they could drink like adults they should have been punished like adults

      Cookie - 2011-11-30 15:19

      AGREE!!!

  • Paul - 2011-11-30 12:57

    So they will be released as hardened criminals in their early 40's? Now there is something to look forward to....

      paul.v.d.merwe - 2011-11-30 13:08

      Exactly! They will emerge worse. Jail is no deterrent or corrective action. That's where they learn how to be real criminals.

      Sharon - 2011-11-30 13:25

      I say bring back the DEATH SENTENCE for MURDER

  • Michael - 2011-11-30 13:03

    How many times do people get murdered due to the attackers being under the influence of alcohol, yet the government chooses to legalise alcohol instead of marijuana. Alcohol makes individuals violent and uncontrollable!

      Lana-May - 2011-11-30 13:12

      Agreed... legalise weed!

      Jaco - 2011-11-30 13:20

      I concur.

      Marlene - 2011-11-30 22:40

      You want to legalise a drug ? - you surely are nuts ! As for alcohol the space is not enough to have a say !!!! They had a field day with smoking but alcohol is apparently here to stay .... to kill people whilst under the influence - and that is happening more and more !! BAN ALCOHOL DAMMIT, and the youngsters might yet be able to prove themselves.

      dave.j.colquhoun - 2011-12-01 08:13

      Hi Michael. Of course the Govt legalises alcohol. How else can they "steal" your hard earned bucks to fill their pockets. I don't believe that alcohol makes an individual violent and uncontrollable at all. I get drunk on occasion, fall down and fall asleep. No harm to anyone else. It's their upbringing that makes them violent and uncontrolable. Alcohol is only considered to be a mitigating factor in a South African Court for some unexplained reason. To the rest of you guys and Dolls below, stop advocating the legalisation of weed lease. Right now, we don't pay tax on that and if they legalise it, they'll tax us to death.

  • Earthling - 2011-11-30 13:04

    This is a very sad story. What could have convinced juviniles who were "well-behaved before their crime spree" to turn to such mindless violence?

      Kaizer - 2011-11-30 13:13

      its the nature of the beast....dormant until they drink, then the true colours start showing....

  • paul.v.d.merwe - 2011-11-30 13:06

    Vote for the rope!

  • Nigel - 2011-11-30 13:19

    stone them, they have no respect for others.

  • Brendon - 2011-11-30 13:26

    Where are these children's parents? It is sad that when these children are released as men that they could potentially be even more dangerous after enduring a lifetime with hardend criminals - don't foresee any rehabilitation in our prison system. Very sad.

  • Cookie - 2011-11-30 13:27

    Constitution????? Rights????? What the hell, since when do murderers have rights? Did they give the victims they murdered the right to live? No i don't think so, clearly they took away that right from them, the right to live!!! There is no justice done in this case, well that is my personal opinion cause if justice was done they would be give much more severe punishment than this. What can those poor families do but just agree with the judgement cause even if they did not agree it would not make a difference. Criminals have more rights in this country than anyone else. They may use alcohol has an excuse and the social workers may find them to have been "well behaved" before this but that makes no difference cause they took the lives of those people, human beings that have families that love them and will never see them again now cause of a bunch of hippocrits who have no feelings and don't have a heart. Instead of using this to set an example that this does not happen again the law has just said that its fine for a juvenile to kill cause they can't do much but give a short period of detention and then when they out just continue as normal socializing and don't worry about the innocent lives they took or robbed people of valuables that they worked so hard for!!! This is madness, crazy. Its time that justice be done in this country and not let criminal just get away all the time, its not fair, just not right!!!

  • botshelom - 2011-11-30 13:53

    South Africa laws are so weak, look at other countries jst for petty crimes like theft or performing indecent acts, like sexually one get life in prison. And for taking one's life in South Africa u get a holiday in prison. Shame on my country

  • Bernard - 2011-11-30 13:58

    Once a savage, always a savage, they should be hung, drawn & quartered.

  • Riëtte - 2011-11-30 14:47

    i just love the fact that they can commit crimes like adults, knowing full well they are doing wrong, then fall back on the juvenile system for leniency. They should be locked up forever, they've taken innocent lives and being drunk is no excuse!

  • ArchAngel - 2011-11-30 14:54

    HANG THEM HIGH!!

  • Kitso - 2011-11-30 14:56

    those are creatures and shud never come out of jail,their minds are already fuked up, now 20 years of prison mind fukin is gona release a even sicker sadistic crew of 3 creatures, bring them 2 botswana we l hang them 4 free

  • The-third - 2011-11-30 14:57

    Line them up and put a bullet in each of them. Why should I have to pay to keep them alive and fed?

  • Barefoot - 2011-11-30 15:28

    If i was the judge I'd give them 3 life sentences each let them take the matter up with the constitutional court, after 20 years they'll go out then what? they kill other people? hell i drink 've never stabbed anyone even those that have provoked me. special consideration must be made in the courts for these kinds of cases!

  • Ben - 2011-11-30 15:35

    When I was 16 I knew full well what was wrong and right.

      StewartR - 2011-11-30 16:32

      And even if concepts of right/wrong were dodgy in some areas... murdering/stabbing people for their cellphones was definitely on the "wrong list" by that stage :| In poor rural communities here a few of the parents don't really "raise" their children. Children are often left to wander and beg, establishing morals of their own based on the shady characters they came across. All the parents provide is a tin roof for them to sleep under. No morals, little to no food. The bare minimum and then even less. They don't want them, but they also don't want to lose the hand-outs from government.

  • terrileeb - 2011-11-30 15:40

    Shocking!

  • Ndungwani - 2011-11-30 16:48

    Law was made by people as such can be changed by the same people,who set the adult age at 18 years (When was that) that can be revised with time ,people are maturing faster than their age ,there bodies are growing bigger than their age,their behaviour is x2 their aged so is their crime rate SO WHY FIXING THE CRIME CHARGES to juvenile when the world is changing including CLIMATE ,please every sector LAW included need CHANGE

  • Bigwolf - 2011-11-30 16:54

    They should hang from a rope not cost us tax money to keep them while they learn to be beter criminals inside for when they get out later.

  • Freddy - 2011-11-30 17:07

    wow so terrible, what's wrong in this society?? Killing people as a game,just to robe for fun...or what?!!! Killing kids as mutti!! Guys start making changes!! What kulture ist that???!!

  • jacques.h.kirchner - 2011-11-30 17:35

    Hey, in the good old RSA these fine young men still have the opportunity to be president one day...Criminal records does not matter in Parliament. This "minor indiscretion" is something that the courts see on a daily basis! It is really difficult reading these stories and trying to understand the cause of all this evil that is so omnipresent in our country.

  • Yar - 2011-11-30 17:55

    I predict that if we don't hang them, they will kill again.

  • Lynn - 2011-11-30 18:56

    They should be locked up forever. Alcohol is no excuse. They behaved like savages. Just because they were well behaved before this incident means nothing. Most people are shocked when they find out that they were living next door to a serial killer. They usually say but he was such a nice person.

  • Ian - 2011-12-01 03:11

    hang the rubbish

  • dave.j.colquhoun - 2011-12-01 08:05

    Hang on a second. If we look at the ages of these blood thirsty little brats and we calculate the sentence given, taking into consideration that they only have to serve a third of their sentance before they can apply for parole, then it is obvious that these cold blooded brats will be back on our streetsbefore they turn 30. This is proof that ou can get away with murder in SA. I still say that the death penalty should be brought back to ensure that murderers and rapists cannot get out of jail free to continue with their chosen career path. @ Adrian below, putting them away for ever costs us money for their wellbeing. Rather hang them and spend some of that money on giving the victims some compensation or, even better than that, spend the money on providing services.

  • jenny.presto1 - 2011-12-01 11:25

    The dirty little killer bastards blame the alcohol that they drank but the govt bans smoking cigarettes and advertising therof. Have you ever see a person light a cigarette and then go on a killing spree?

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