Child molester gets suspended sentence

2013-08-06 22:20

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Mbombela - A convicted child molester was sentenced to four years' imprisonment, suspended for five years, by the Nelspruit Regional Court on Tuesday.

Two expert witnesses had recommended that Carl Lotter be given direct correctional supervision, a Sapa correspondent reported.

One of them, psychologically-motivated crimes expert Colonel Petunia Lenono, told the court he posed a threat to children.

However, Magistrate Erwin Sithole said Lotter had complied with the conditions of a previous suspended sentence and not committed similar offences for the suspended period.

"I believe that this time he'll also be able to comply with this condition, or I will have no alternative but to send him to direct imprisonment."

Lotter, who molested two girls between 2006 and 2009, was out on bail of R8 000 despite a previous conviction for indecently assaulting a 9-year-old in 1998.

Sithole said Coert Jordaan, representing Lotter, had told the court the girls were not physically injured, but that their schoolwork had deteriorated.

He also noted that Lotter had lost his job since the charges were brought against him.

Sithole said he would not fine Lotter either.

"A fine will also give a wrong impression to the public that, if convicted criminals have money, they will pay their way out of jail.

"Fines will not deter other would-be child molesters."

Sithole said courts were expected to impose sentences which were appropriate to the crime, and which would make the public respect the law.

The State withdrew a rape charge against Lotter after his arrest in 2009.

"If the State did not abandon the rape charge, as you were earlier charged in this matter, you would be sentenced to direct imprisonment," Sithole said.

He advised Lotter to continue attending a sex therapy programme.

Read more on:    mbombela  |  child abuse

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