DPP to appeal sentence of Vanderbijlpark father who shot and killed his son

2019-11-21 18:49
Coert Kruger embraces a relative. (Elizabeth Sejake, Rapport, file)

Coert Kruger embraces a relative. (Elizabeth Sejake, Rapport, file)

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The Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) in Pretoria will appeal the conviction of a Vanderbijlpark father who shot and killed his son after he mistook him for a burglar.

According to Gauteng National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson Phindi Mjonondwane, the DPP viewed the sentence handed to Coert Johannes Kruger by the Vanderbijlpark Regional Court as shocking.

Kruger was released on a warning and did not serve any jail time.

READ: Dad who killed son after mistaking him for a burglar freed after murder conviction

Mjonondwane said the sentence imposed on Kruger was inappropriate and the DPP had successfully applied for leave to appeal it.

"The accused shot and killed his own son, Coert Johannes Kruger Junior, who was on the roof of his grandmother's house on the evening of March 22. Kruger later pleaded guilty to a charge of murder and explained he reacted to an alarm being activated at his mother's house, and met with a security guard.

"After an investigation, the accused and the security guard located a person on the roof and Kruger immediately shot at him, only to realise at a later stage that he had shot his own son."

She said in terms of the law, the grounds for the State to appeal was limited to a question of law which could be misinterpreted, misdirected or misapplied.

Misdirection

In this instance, the NPA is of the view that the magistrate committed a serious misdirection by not referring to the most recent sentence, where under similar circumstances in a Lenasia Magistrate's Court case, a father was sentenced to 10 years, which was suspended for five years.

Last year, Sibusiso Emanuel Tshabalala shot and killed his son, Luyanda, after he knocked on the window of the car in which Tshabalala was sleeping. Tshabalala at the time believed he was being robbed.

"The great disparity in the two sentences under similar circumstances, both in the Gauteng division, does not augur well for legal precedent. The principle of stare decisis is sacrosanct in that the law expounded in one case should be followed in deciding cases with similar material facts, hence the NPA could not leave this matter unchallenged," said Mjonodwane.

Read more on:    npa  |  johannesburg  |  crime  |  court
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