Slain woman was pregnant

2014-11-25 00:00

SHOCKING evidence has emerged that the young woman found stabbed and with her throat cut at the weekend was apparently expecting a baby and was first raped several times by her ­attackers.

She is believed to have been in her second month of pregnancy.

The woman’s 23-year-old former boyfriend and three juveniles ­appeared in separate courtrooms at the Pietermaritzburg Magistrate’s Court yesterday, charged with both her rape and murder.

The former boyfriend — who is from the Northdale area — stood ­silently and showed no emotion as his attorney, Nasen Naicker, told ­magistrate Ntsoaki Ndawonde that he is considering pleading guilty to the charges.

The man’s name cannot be ­published until he has formally ­pleaded to the charges because they involve allegations of sexual assault.

“My instructions are that my client intends to plead guilty and we were hoping to finalise this matter this week,” Naicker told the court.

However, the prosecution ordered the matter to be referred to the office of the KZN Director of Public ­Prosecutions to decide if the case should be tried in the high court or the ­regional court, and to finalise the charges against the four.

According to the state’s charge sheet, the man is charged with raping the woman in circumstances where she “was raped more than once, and by more than one person”.

He is charged with the ­“premeditat­ed murder” of the young woman on November 20 in Mysore Road.

The case was adjourned until ­December 8 for the Director of Public Prosecutions’ decision.

The man’s juvenile co-accused — who are 14, 16 and 17 years old — are alleged to have participated in the woman’s rape and murder at her ­boyfriend’s behest.

They appeared in a separate court for juveniles yesterday, but the case against them could not continue ­because the guardians of two of the youngsters could not be located.

The Witness was told the youths were remanded until their guardians are found and can attend court.

Meanwhile, Sanja Bornman, a ­lawyer at the Women’s Legal Centre, which undertakes litigation to ­advance the rights of women, said murder of women by their male partners is a widespread problem in SA.

Sima Diar, programmes manager of the Niasaa Institute for Women’s Development, said they were “outraged” by the allegations in the court case.

She said research done in August 2013 highlighted that a woman was killed every eight hours by her intimate partner in SA.

“As a country, we are not sufficiently geared towards effectively curbing violence against women. Government has no plan of action to combat the scourge and civil society has become just as complacent.

“And this on the eve of 16 Days of Activism. It will be interesting to see how much money government and corporate organisations spend on big events during the 16 Days of Activism, yet there is no real commitment to fight the pandemic,” she said.

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