'I cannot forgive them' - mother of coffin assault victim

2017-10-27 16:10
Victor Mlotshwa’s mother Lonia breaks down during court proceeding. (File, Gallo Images)

Victor Mlotshwa’s mother Lonia breaks down during court proceeding. (File, Gallo Images)

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LIVE VIDEO: Judgment handed down in coffin assault case

2017-08-25 10:32

Judgment in the trial of coffin assault accused Theo Jackson and Willem Oosthuizen, who allegedly forced Victor Mlotshwa into a coffin, is expected to be delivered in the High Court sitting in Middelburg.WATCH

Middelburg – "I cannot forgive them because they failed to have mercy on my child when they forced him into the coffin," said Lonia Mlotshwa, shortly after her son’s attackers were sentenced to jail.

"I am very happy. As a mother, I am satisfied [and] sentencing should not be something that kills you. I would not have my child today [had they succeeded in their plans]," she said.

Theo Jackson and Willem Oosthuizen - the men who forced Victor Mlotshwa into a coffin - will spend 11 years and 14 years respectively behind bars.

EXCLUSIVE: Families of coffin assault duo had to sell their possessions to survive

When Judge Segopotje Mphahlele handed down the sentences in the High Court, sitting in the Middelburg Magistrate’s Court on Friday, she said the conduct of the two men was "humiliating and disgusting".

They had forced Mlotshwa into a coffin and threatened to pour petrol on him.

The incident was filmed and when the video went viral on social media, it sparked an outcry and people demanded justice.

Mphahlele said their conduct goes against the spirit of the Constitution.

The pair's bail was revoked shortly after sentencing and Mphahlele dismissed their application for leave to appeal their jail sentences.

Convictions 

Jackson and Oosthuizen, who were convicted of assault, attempted murder, kidnapping and intimidation, tried to remain composed when their sentences were handed down.

They touched their relatives' hands as they were led down to the cells.

During their trial, the two men argued that they had to act when Mlotshwa allegedly threatened to burn their crops and murder their wives and children.

They claimed to have caught Mlotshwa stealing copper in late 2016.

During his testimony, Jackson told the court that he was told to "get rid" of the coffin because it was causing trouble.

The coffin would have been used as crucial evidence in the case.


During his evidence-in-chief, led by his lawyer Org Basson, Jackson said he never considered what they did to Mlotshwa as wrong.

Mlotshwa had previously testified that Jackson made use of the knobkerrie to assault him all over his body, but "mostly on the back".

He also said the two had used cable ties to restrain him.

Read more on:    theo jackson  |  willem oosthuizen  |  middelburg  |  courts

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