Rape trio get five life terms and more

2011-08-12 00:00

COURTS have a duty not only to protect the constitutional rights of accused people, but also those of the innocent citizens, a Pietermaritzburg high court judge said when he imposed five life terms plus additional jail sentences on three men for gang rape, robbery and attempted murder.

The trio were found guilty of breaking into the home of a Georgedale couple while they were sleeping in the early hours of the morning, of robbing them at gunpoint of cash and cellphones, and then “queuing up” to gang-rape the young woman, who was violated five times.

Her boyfriend was forced to watch.

Thereafter he was held while one of the accused, Siyabonga Mkhize, stabbed him several times with a screwdriver in what the court described as a “vicious” and life-threatening attack.

The incident took place on January 16 last year.

Accused Lucky Nzama (22) and Mkhize (23) and Nhlanhla Msibi (22), all from Georgedale, showed no remorse for their actions, acting Judge Kobus Booyens said.

“You departed on a reign of terror that night and what you did is completely inexcusable,” he told the accused.

Taking account of the roles that each accused had played, the judge sentenced Nzama to five life terms plus an effective 20 years’ imprisonment, Mkhize to five life terms plus 28 years’ imprisonment and Msibi to five life terms plus an effective 23 years’ imprisonment. Some terms will run concurrently.

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