UPDATE | Bob Hewitt granted parole

2020-03-24 14:28
Bob Hewitt leaves the North Gauteng High Court. (Herman Verwey, Gallo Images, Beeld, file)

Bob Hewitt leaves the North Gauteng High Court. (Herman Verwey, Gallo Images, Beeld, file)

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Former tennis star Bob Hewitt has been granted parole and will leave prison on 24 April.

"We have just got news from the parole board," said Chrispin Phiri, spokesperson for Justice and Correctional Services Minister Ronald Lamola. 

Tania Koen, the lawyer representing victims Olivia Jasriel and "W", who cannot be named, said she did not have a full list of conditions yet. But she understood that Hewitt would be under house arrest and would not be allowed to contact the victims.

The two and Theresa "Twiggy" Tolken opposed the 80-year-old's release.

Eligible

Once an offender has served a certain amount of time they are eligible to apply for parole. 

"But being eligible doesn't necessarily mean that you are entitled to parole," said Koen. 

Phiri says there is a process in place for people to raise objections if parole is granted. 

Born in Australia, the former Grand Slam tennis champion was found guilty of rape in 2015. 

He has been in prison since September 2016, after being sentenced to serve six years. 

Hewitt coached victims Jasriel and "W" when they were young girls in the 1980s and 1990s.

Department spokesperson Singabakho Nxumalo said Hewitt served three years, six months and 22 days of his six-year sentence.

He was classified as a first-time offender and was placed on parole in line with Section 73 of the Correctional Services Act, which determines the minimum period of sentence to be served before consideration may be given. 

Hewitt participated in the relevant correctional programmes and was assessed by special services experts, including social workers and psychologists to determine his suitability for parole, Nxumalo said. 

Parole means a person finishes the sentence outside jail. 

Victims were invited to make representations and participate in the process.

"Inmate Hewitt will complete the remainder of his sentence in the system of community corrections, whereby he must comply with the specific set of conditions and be subjected to correctional supervision until the sentence expires," said Nxumalo.


Read more on:    bob hewitt  |  courts  |  crime
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