'Sunday Rapist' found guilty on 33 charges

Johannesburg - "Sunday Rapist" Jaco Steyn was found guilty on 33 charges, including murder, in the South Gauteng High Court sitting in Alberton on Tuesday.

Judge Sita Kolbe found him guilty on all but four of the 37 charges brought against him.

Two of those were changed from rape to sexual assault and one was changed from murder to culpable homicide.

Steyn has pleaded not guilty to two counts of murder, 11 of rape, 10 of sexual assault, 10 of kidnapping, one of attempted sexual assault, and one of attempted kidnapping.

The abductions took place between 2008 and 2011 and the girls were aged between 11 and 18.

Among these was 16-year-old Louise de Waal.

Steyn was found guilty of murdering and abducting her, but not guilty of raping her. Kolbe said there was insufficient evidence to prove it.

"He is a self-confessed liar," Kolbe said in describing Steyn.

She said he admitted he lied to his wife and employer about his whereabouts on the day of De Waal's murder.

De Waal was abducted in October last year while she was on her way to school in Roodepoort. It was just before her 17th birthday.

De Waal's burnt body was found on a Magaliesberg farm later the same day.

Kolbe also found him guilty of abducting 14-year-old Lazanne Farmer in Pretoria in September 2010. He was found guilty of culpable homicide, not murder.

Farmer, from Pretoria, was kidnapped in September 2010 by a man in a bakkie. She died after jumping out of the bakkie in a bid to escape.

After the judgment a tearful Steyn said he would make a statement at a later stage.

"There's a lot that you don't know," he said.

He cried as he spoke about his wife.

"My wife doesn't even talk to me."

Steyn was mocked by family members attending proceedings, with someone shouting: "pappa wag vir jou" (daddy's waiting for you).

Bitter-sweet

Louise's mother Shereen walked up to Steyn during a brief break, saying she wanted to look him in the eye.

"Jaco Steyn, I am Louise de Waal's mother - you killed my child and you will pay for what you did."

Anton Lerm, for Steyn, argued his client's sentences should run concurrently. He said no excessive violence was used in the rape cases.

He asked Kolbe not to impose a lengthy prison sentence.

The matter was adjourned until Wednesday for arguments in aggravation and mitigation of sentencing.

Shereen later told reporters that she confronted Steyn because she could not contain her emotions any more.

"I actually wanted to scratch his eyes out. I'm very happy that I did that," she said.

"I wanted him to look me in the eye. I wanted him to know I'm Louise de Waal's mother."

She said it was ironic that Steyn's son's birthday was on the same day as her daughter's.

"We are glad the court proceedings are over, but we will never have closure."

Louise's sister Jessica du Toit said the judgment was "bitter-sweet", because he was not convicted of the rape.

"We are both happy and sad, because the reason he took her is because he wanted to rape her."

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