Gerhard Jansen van Vuuren gets life sentence for killing ex-lover then fleeing to Brazil

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Gerhard Jansen van Vuuren.
Gerhard Jansen van Vuuren.
Deaan Vivier
  • Gerhard Jansen van Vuuren has been sentenced to life imprisonment for murdering his ex-girlfriend, Andrea Venter.
  • He stabbed her 14 times before slitting her throat.
  • Jansen van Vuuren fled to Brazil after being released on bail. He was rearrested seven years later.

The man who killed his ex-lover and fled to Brazil, where he started a new life, has been handed a life sentence in the Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg.

Gerhard Jansen van Vuuren was sentenced on Friday. The court also cautioned him for threatening to assault a security guard who had responded to a commotion during the incident.

Jansen van Vuuren murdered Andrea Venter at her apartment in Lonehill, Johannesburg, in 2011. He stabbed her 14 times before slitting her throat.

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When she ran out to get help, Jansen van Vuuren threatened security guard Thulani Ndlovu with a knife. Ndlovu locked himself in a guard house and called for backup.

Jansen van Vuuren was arrested for the murder and later released on bail. In 2013, he used fake documents to flee to Brazil a few days before he was supposed to be tried for the murder. He started a new life in Brazil and also became a father.

He was extradited to South Africa in 2020 after seven years on the run. On 13 June, he was found guilty of premeditated murder and assault.

Andrea Venter
Andrea Venter.

Prosecutor advocate Rolene Barnard said she was happy with the sentence.

"The court has followed the trend of sentencing gender-based violence matters [harshly]. I am happy that there is finality and closure for the family of the deceased. For them, it was very [traumatic]."

Barnard said Jansen van Vuuren's conviction was especially satisfying after he had been on the run for so many years.

"It feels good that despite the time delay, he is convicted and sentenced. After all the attempts to get him back [from Brazil] after his attempts to abscond from the law, this is somehow closure for the family," Barnard added.

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