Kotzé 'inherently evil'

2013-07-17 16:51

Pretoria - Judge Bert Bam, in sentencing Johan Kotzé to life for murder, kidnapping and rape, said on Wednesday the "Modimolle Monster" seemed inherently evil.

Kotzé and his three co-accused were handed life sentences by the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria.

Kotzé  and Andries Sithole were sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder of Conrad Bonnette, 19. He was the son of Ina Bonnette, Kotzé's ex-wife.

Both also got 10 years for kidnapping.

"It was a senseless act," Bam said.

Kotzé and Sithole were found guilty on Monday of killing Conrad Bonnette.

Pieta Mohlake and Sello Mphaka were acquitted on the murder charge. However, each of the four was convicted of kidnapping, and of four charges relating to the rape of Ina Bonnette.

Mohlake and Mphaka received 10 years for kidnapping.

All four men were each given a life sentence on the rape charges.

For assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm, Kotzé received 15 years, and the other three eight years each.

Ina Bonnette was attacked and tortured in Kotzé's Modimolle home on 3 January 2012. Her son was shot and killed in the house on the same day.


Bam said there were three aspects which needed to be taken into account when deciding on a sentence. These were the nature of the crime, the personal circumstances of the accused, and the community's interests.

Bam said certain crimes, such as premeditated murder and gang rape, had a mandatory life sentence.

"Conrad's murder was planned. It was a pre-planned murder."

He said the accused's personal circumstances were less important than the aggravating factors in the case.

Conrad Bonnette was killed within earshot of his mother. Despite pleading for mercy, he was still killed.

"This contributed to Ina Bonnette's trauma."

He said she was badly injured and raped by a man she trusted, accompanied by three masked men.

"A more shocking and traumatic experience is unfathomable."

The trauma and humiliation she underwent would be difficult to describe, Bam said.

Her assault had to be seen in a serious light.

No remorse

"The injuries were serious and also left her psychologically scarred," Bam said.

He briefly touched on the mitigating aspect of remorse during sentencing. Remorse could only act in mitigation of sentence, not in aggravation, he explained.

"However, in this case there was no sign of remorse from any of the accused."

There was no reason to deviate from the prescribed sentences. The aggravating circumstances in the case were overwhelming.

Bam said it appeared Kotzé was excessively jealous over Ina Bonnette.

Bonnette, who was in court on Wednesday, started crying as the sentence was read out. She was supported by family and friends.

"A person just has to stand strong," she said after the sentencing.

She urged victims of abuse to report the crime and ensure they followed the right channels.

Justice done

"Jesus put each of us on this earth for a purpose, and that purpose is not to abuse," Bonnette said.

"Justice has been done. [Kotzé] deserves his sentence."

She said the sentencing marked the start of a new phase of her life.

"Time will heal the humiliation, but the hurt will never go away."

She said she would go to her son's grave and have a long talk with him afterwards.

"And I can tell him: 'My son, justice has prevailed.'."

Women, Children and People with Disabilities Minister Lulu Xingwana welcomed the sentence.

"Justice has been done," she said, holding Bonnette's hand.

"We hope that this sentence will bring closure and peace to [Bonnette] and her family to know that those who have violated her and murdered her son are finally behind bars," Xingwana said.

"We hope the monster and his co-accused will rot in jail."

After the sentence was handed down, family members of Kotzé's co-accused cried. One woman started wailing.

Kotzé declined to speak to the media and hurriedly made his way down to the cells.

  • Carolyn Sims-Handcock - 2013-07-17 16:59

    When this man looks back on his life one day, I wonder if he will be able to say to himself, "Mine is a life well lived". I think not.

      Lyle Winters - 2013-07-17 17:41

      "Kotzé 'inherently evil'" Hmmm, sounds like an atheist.

      Ingi Raikes - 2013-07-17 17:56

      Good, the bastard has got his 'eye for an eye'! What about his poor wife who will bear the scars of this horrific attack for the rest of her life and the memory of her sons appeal before he was shot dead! What bothers me is why the State 'keep' people like him locked up for ever, at our expense!!! Make use of prisoners like Kotze, and murderers, rapists and paedophiles' at least; for experiments normally forced on innocent animals whose results cannot possibly give a truer reading than testing on humans for humans can do, and leave animals out of these horrific, cruel practices!!!

      Lara van Rooyen - 2013-07-17 18:38

      No, Carolyn. He is incapable of introspection. A psychopath.

      anikenvader - 2013-07-17 18:43

      The other two men were acquitted of murder but what about accessory to murder charges???

      Scouter Four-One - 2013-07-17 23:05

      @lyle - as a practicing Christian, I find your comment above offensive, ignorant and irrational. Perhaps you should re-examine your faith because that type of mindless utterance does your cause, whatever that might be, no good whatsoever.....

  • JimGordon - 2013-07-17 17:02

    I think the Judge could say the same of his lawyer - I could not have represented him, especially claiming that he is innocent. Those words could not have come out of my mouth.

  • Tmash Brown - 2013-07-17 17:06

    please stop cheating! a man is today labelled evil, his life is taken away from him. he will merely exist.i empathise with him

      Marika de Klerk - 2013-07-17 17:18

      Empathy means to put yourself in another person's shoes, ergo, are you also capable of such an evil crime?

      Stavious Mamatepa - 2013-07-17 17:24

      @Tmash....are you Kotze's cousin? Or you committed the same offence as his and get away with it?

      Tmash Brown - 2013-07-17 17:33

      @MR stop throwing childlike tantrums, am not against the sentence or condone ALL what he did, I wonder if you heard of his testimony? your comment is irrelevant to mine. and to the lady am not sympathizing if thats what you saying.

      John Neilson - 2013-07-17 17:38

      @Tmash - I couldn't care if she had sex with another man in front of him that still does not justify what he did. No man has the right to do that. period.

      Lwandile Mabusela - 2013-07-17 17:51

      If she was cheating or had cheated on him, all he had to do was to walk away.

      Lentokazi YakwaManzini KoSengwayo - 2013-07-17 18:02

      This tmash guy is a retarded troll. Let's ignore him and just wish what Ina went through, one of the females in his family goes through, then we will see whether there will be another retarded comment from him.

      kimster - 2013-07-17 18:11

      hah? she was separated from him before she started going out you crazy fk - even if a person cheats, no one deserves this.

      Marika de Klerk - 2013-07-18 11:15

      Find a dictionary and look up the words sympathize, empathize, cheating, rape, murder, monster, evil! Maybe you will learn something and next time you have to say something it will not be utter rubbish!

  • Stavious Mamatepa - 2013-07-17 17:13

    All murder cases must be given to this judge he knows how to deal with senseless murders.....not Zuma's friends who will hand out a 10 years sentence for rape and murder.....I salute you Judge Bert Bam

  • Dan Jackiels - 2013-07-17 17:23

    Judge Bert Bam. What a cool surname for a judge. You've been found guilty... Bam! I would do that if I was him. Just saying.

      TaniaSS - 2013-07-17 22:41

      I wish he could have said: "Bam! You're dead."

  • Gaylord TheAtheist - 2013-07-17 17:24

    This is why wee need the death sentence! Now our tax money is keeping this AHole in jail for the rest of his life, instead were we can just spend a bit of money for a rope and I can tie the knot

  • Sarel W Brits - 2013-07-17 17:25

    Aaaaaa now if only we had the death penalty we could finish this lot and give them real justice on the end of a rope.

  • Mcool McKwanazi - 2013-07-17 17:41

    If only all cases were handled in this manner there would surely be very few offenders. Well done Sir Bam

  • Linah PhOshoko - 2013-07-17 17:41

    M happy

  • Josie de Villiers - 2013-07-17 17:43

    Thank you Judge Bam for your wisdom, sense of justice and empathy in arriving at the sentence to be handed down. Kotze does appear to be inherently evil. I cannot imagine how someone could behave in such a vicious, cruel and inhumane manner. He deserves everything that's coming to him.

      Louise Cook - 2013-07-18 03:28

      Watch this space - now Kotze is going to start studying in jail and get some masters degree. They'd better put him in CMax - he's the running away type.

  • Sipho Shabalala - 2013-07-17 17:43

    The focus was on the case in hand. However, something must have triggered this so called evil deed. There are a lot dead-man walking out there, simply because they have chosen to do nothing. A lot of them have been used, drained out financially and dumped like trash.

      TaniaSS - 2013-07-17 22:47

      I agree to an extent, Sipho. There are evil women out there, and they tend to have the sympathy vote. This man is way beyond any normal scope of anger. If someone has treated you ill, fight her in the Courts. If you don't have the means, forget and learn. Peace to you.

  • Thapelo Lefifi - 2013-07-17 17:57

    Justice was served. I would really love to see the look in his face, should he make it to the free state maximum prison. Above all prisons are meant to rehabilitate but I guess for him its gonna be a life time. He just need to find God for his soul to be at peace.

  • Lentokazi YakwaManzini KoSengwayo - 2013-07-17 18:06

    Judge Bert are my personal hero. I applaud the sentences you handed down. Too bad they will NEVER reverse Ina's hurt though. The hell she has gone through, no reasonable person would wish on their worst enemy!

  • Felicity Konigsberger - 2013-07-17 18:16

    Far too lenient, I wish the death sentence was still in force.

  • WILDSBOK - 2013-07-17 18:19

    Very well said Stavious.

  • Fannaman Modise - 2013-07-17 18:31

    i am fana here must go life is divel

  • George Pito - 2013-07-17 18:59

    There is things in life I dont understand. How did Ina get involved with this man. How did this become so evil. Why the young boy. Then despite his sentence and what he did he kept on fighting for his innocence is the will to life that strong. To me suicide in his position been the best option. The other guys I cannot be the judge and somehow I feel sorry for the families of these people. Then people do heal and somehow the monster also seems to be strong. I am glad this case is over as I never thought that evilness can excist.

      Louise Cook - 2013-07-18 03:24

      Pleased the co-accused are appealing against their sentences - the one testified he is married and only pretended to rape her as he doesn't like 'other women.' I believe their appeal might result in lessor sentences. Kotze is nothing but emotionally highly immature and deserves what he got - what a pity the death sentence is gone.

  • Iam Whoiam - 2013-07-17 19:12


  • Motodi William Maseloane II - 2013-07-17 19:36

    Serves them right....

  • Victor van der Merwe - 2013-07-17 19:49

    Johnson Marx, are you for real?

  • Nhlanganiso Joseph - 2013-07-17 20:00

    Now is Johan kotze next is Oscar mothutlung.

  • Richard George Galpin - 2013-07-17 20:12

    Our congratulations and thanks go to the Prosecution team and especially to Mr Justice Bam. With their foresight and excellence has prevented some incensed South African from taking the law into their own hands and permanently removing these travesties of the human race from our society. The whole of South Africa was so angered and incensed by their callous actions, that most are speechless. What I now wish for is for Ina's friends to enfold her with loving kindness and consideration to enable her to at least start the long road to healing in body, mind and spirit. May God Bless you, dear Ina.

  • TaniaSS - 2013-07-18 02:01

    For me, the worst part of this horror was the way ms Bonette had to explain every action, was attacked by the lawyers because she had other people in her life once she got rid of this Monster, and having to face him day after day.We have to find a better way to do this. The victim shouldn't be on trail.

  • Louise Cook - 2013-07-18 03:17

    The "la-la class" minister held Ina's hand? She's at every high-profile court case to catch the TV cameras and limelight - no wonder people with disabilities are no better off than before she took on that portfolio some years ago already. And SA's rape statistics, violence against women and children who suffer and no less than before her time. She says she doesnt fly 'la-la' class - she only settles for business class! LOL!

  • Louise Cook - 2013-07-18 03:30

    Imagine being his lawyer! Yack!

  • Melan Beko - 2013-07-18 07:04

    This infuriates me to say the least. Much more gruesome crimes are being commited in this country where whole families are killed on farms but the men are almost never caught or if they are then they get a slap on the hand and the media puts it in the back of their news papers like its not a big deal. And yet this guy pays some men to kill his wife and he is in the news every day. Yes they are all sick murderers but why so much focus on this guy when there are much sicker crimes being commited?

  • Conrad Foord - 2013-07-18 08:36

    Pity we don't have the death sentence any more. That would have been justice, now we the tax payer will feed him and pay for his "rehabilitation".

  • Zeb Moche - 2013-07-18 08:53

    Come on Oscar you are next,when will Shrien Dewan land in South Africa? Seeing what is happening i think Oscar's pants are wet.

  • Chris Swart - 2013-07-18 10:44

    Modimole...what a stupid and funny name for a town...Nylstroom sounded much much better!

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