Zephany accused hears her fate

By admin
10 March 2016

The woman accused of kidnapping Zephany Nurse has been found guilty of snatching the child from her sleeping mother’s arms 19 years ago.

"It is clear to me there is overwhelming evidence," Judge John Hlophe said in the Western Cape High Court on Thursday.

"[It is] clear from DNA evidence that you are not the mother. One doesn’t have to be a rocket scientist to know you don’t buy babies."

Read more: ‘I had to listen to her lies for days’: Zephany judge

The accused, who may not be named as it may result in the teenager’s identity being revealed, pleaded not guilty to charges of kidnapping, fraud and contravening the Children’s Act.

On Wednesday, Judge John Hlophe questioned the women’s testimony, saying no one would believe her claims.

Read more: Zephany Nurse’s birth mother breaks down in court

He dismissed her evidence, saying he had “listened to her lies for days”.

“She was consistent. She bought the baby for R3 000 and paid a deposit of R800, but with no receipt. Who can believe that?”

According to the accused’s testimony, she got the baby from a woman called Sylvia, who had been giving her fertility treatment in 1997 after she had miscarried.

Sylvia arranged for the baby to be handed to her at Wynberg station without her prior knowledge, the accused claimed.

She said she was surprised because she had expected to meet to discuss the adoption process.

Read more: ‘I’m guilty of raising her, yes. I raised her with the help of God but I didn’t take her’: Zephany’s alleged abductor

Sylvia claimed she knew of a woman who did not want to keep her baby because the pregnancy was unplanned.

The accused testified the woman said the paperwork would be arranged later and she had signed documents including an “adoption application”.

She claimed to have never heard from Sylvia again.

The accused said that six years later she received a birth certificate by post with the name she chose for the baby.

Morne Nurse, Zephany’s biological father, previously testified he collected evidence for a month after he met the teenager, when his daughter told him a girl at her school bore a striking resemblance to her.

After collecting his daughter Cassidy and the then 17-year-old from school in January 2015, he took the two friends to lunch, where she told him her date of birth – April 30, 1997. This was the date his daughter was abducted.

When he told her she did not look like her parents and looked just like him and his daughter, she burst out laughing.

He backed off as he did not want to scare her, but "scrutinised" her Facebook account and printed photos of her as she had grown up.

Nurse said he sent a photo of the girl and her mother to witness Shireen Piet, who claimed to have seen the suspected abductor on the day Zephany was snatched from her sleeping mother.

When he asked Piet if she recognised the woman, Piet said she did.

DNA tests later confirmed the teenager was Zephany.


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