Mpumalanga farm robber gets 45 years in jail

Nelspruit - A man who attacked and robbed farm dwellers in Mpumalanga was sentenced to 45 years in prison by the Nelspruit Regional Court on Monday.

A Sapa correspondent reported that Xolane Letsoalo, 27, from Ngodwana outside Mbombela, faced nine charges including theft, armed robbery, housebreaking, two of attempted murder, and possession of an unlicensed firearm and ammunition.

His co-accused, Freddy Nkosi, 27, faced one charge of possession of an unlicensed firearm and ammunition.

The two were arrested in November 2010 and pleaded not guilty to all charges.

Magistrate Andre Geldenhuys sentenced Letsoalo to 15 years on three counts of housebreaking and theft, 10 years on two counts of attempted murder, 10 years on two counts of armed robbery, two years on theft out of a motor vehicle and eight years on possession of an unlicensed firearm and ammunition.

Letsoalo would serve the sentences consecutively.

Geldenhuys sentenced Nkosi to eight years, and said he was lucky he was not charged for the other offences.

Letsoalo committed very serious offences, he said.

“A day after you committed the first robbery and stole a firearm, you went further to use the same firearm to commit another robbery."

Letsoalo could have easily killed some of his victims. “You fired shots at two women at a farm and injured one of them. You shot at her using her own firearm. You could have easily killed her."

The two had shown no remorse during the trial, Geldenhuys said.

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