Teenagers’ rapist gets three life terms

2013-05-01 00:00

RAPE is “like an illness going on around the country”.

With these words, regional court magistrate Phumlani Bhengu sentenced serial rapist Sthembiso Mkhize (34) to three life terms for raping teenage girls.

Two of the victims were 15 years old when they were raped near Botha’s Hill in 2010, and the third, who was raped in February 2011, was 18.

Bhengu said Mkhize’s first victim was held hostage on March 30, 2010, and raped twice.

His second victim was woken at gunpoint in her bed on the night of June 19, 2010, taken to the bush and raped.

She was taken to a rondavel and raped again.

Mkhize forced the third teenager into the bush at gunpoint and raped her on February 13, 2011.

“The court does not know what would have happened to her if her family had not rescued her,” the magistrate said.

He said all three victims had sustained injuries, were traumatised and would have to live with what happened for the rest of their lives.

Bhengu said that based on evidence by an expert, Dr Johan de Wet, Mkhize met the criteria to be labelled a serial rapist.

Besides the three terms of life imprisonment for the rapes, he sentenced Mkhize to three years’ imprisonment on an additional charge of escaping from custody at Camperdown.

He also declared him unfit to possess a firearm.

• ingrido@witness.co.za

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