Man gets 22 years for rape, theft and attempted murder at Eastern Cape farm

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A man has been sentenced for an attack at an Eastern Cape farm.
A man has been sentenced for an attack at an Eastern Cape farm.
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  • Anele Tonze broke into the Cove Rock farmhouse in East London on 13 September 2019 and stole several items, including a 9mm Makarov Short pistol and seven 9mm cartridges.
  • He then broke into a backyard flat on the farm and raped a tenant. 
  • Tonze then had an encounter with the owner and pulled the trigger twice at the 65-year-old, but the pistol jammed.  

An Eastern Cape man who broke into a farm - where he raped a tenant and attempted to murder a 65-year-old farm owner after stealing valuables and a gun - has been sentenced to 22 years in prison. 

Anele Tonze, 33, was sentenced in the Grahamstown High Court on Monday.

He was handed 15 years imprisonment for rape, 15 years for robbery with aggravating circumstances and 10 years for possession of a semi-automatic firearm in contravention of the Firearms Control Act.

He was further sentenced to three years imprisonment in respect of another contravention of the Firearms Control Act, seven years for attempted murder, six years for attempted rape, five years for housebreaking with intent to steal and five years for housebreaking with intent to commit rape. 

The National Prosecuting Authority said the court ordered that the sentences, except for his conviction of attempted murder, run concurrently. 

READ | Eastern Cape farmer, 72, who fought off gunmen says his military training helped save the day

He will serve an effective 22 years imprisonment, said NPA spokesperson Anelisa Ngcakani.aa

The NPA said Tonze broke into the Cove Rock farmhouse in East London on 13 September 2019 and stole several items, including a 9mm Makarov Short pistol and seven 9mm cartridges.

"He then went to a flat situated on the premises and broke down the door. There Tonze found a 35-year-old woman. Armed with a firearm, he robbed her of her cellphone, some cash and perfume, whereafter he attempted to rape her. 

"He proceeded to rape her. He then ransacked the flat and tied her hands behind her back with a cable,” said Ngcakani. 

Arrived

While Tonze was at the flat, the 65-year-old owner of the property arrived in his vehicle. 

The NPA said Tonze then ran outside of the flat and pointed the stolen firearm at the pensioner. 

"He pulled the trigger twice at very close range; fortunately, the firearm did not discharge," said Ngcakani. 

He then ran to the back of the main house, where he fired a shot and ran past the owner, hiding behind his vehicle before fleeing the scene.

ALSO READ | Eastern Cape farmer kills two suspects and is stabbed to death during confrontation

While Judge John Smith noted that Tonze had had a difficult life and was raised by a single parent and in a children's home, he found that this could not be an excuse for criminal activities. 

He said that the rape would have long-term effects on the complainant who was still suffering from flashbacks, lived in fear for her life and had generally been unable to put the incident behind her. 

Smith said, "to my mind, a sentence of 10 years imprisonment would be shockingly lenient and does not reflect the seriousness of the offence. It would be a slap in the face of the complainant if such a sentence was imposed". 

Consequently, a sentence of 15 years imprisonment for rape was imposed.

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