Seven life terms for Mpumalanga serial rapist who attacked some victims in graveyard

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Elvis Aaron Zulu has been sentenced to 7 life terms and 83 years of direct imprisonment for rape, kidnapping and robbery.
Elvis Aaron Zulu has been sentenced to 7 life terms and 83 years of direct imprisonment for rape, kidnapping and robbery.
Supplied by NPA
  • A Mpumalanga serial rapist was handed seven life terms plus 83 years of imprisonment.
  • Elvis Aaron Zulu was found guilty of raping six women and a girl between 2011 and 2014.
  • His name has been added to the National Register for Sex Offenders.

A 40-year-old serial rapist from Mpumalanga has been sentenced to seven life terms plus an effective 83 years in prison.

Elvis Aaron Zulu was found guilty of raping six women and a young girl in and around Mbombela between February 2011 and November 2014.

The Mpumalanga High Court in Mbombela found Zulu guilty on 22 charges earlier this month. This comprised nine counts of rape, six counts of kidnapping, three counts of robbery with aggravating circumstances, three counts of pointing a firearm, and one count of possession of an unlicensed firearm.

During sentencing on Wednesday, Judge Takalani Ratshibvumo said Zulu failed to show remorse.

"There is no substantial and compelling circumstances to justify deviation from the imposition of the prescribed minimum sentence," he said.

Zulu's reign of terror occurred mostly in Pienaar in the Kabokweni district.

READ | 5 life terms, 191 years for rapist already serving 10-years as DNA links him to 18 more rapes

According to the State, Zulu targeted the victims at gunpoint, took them to a nearby house and raped them.

"He would sometimes take his victims to a nearby graveyard, rape them and rob them of their belongings like cellphones and cash," said National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson Monica Nyuswa.

"In one incident, on 2 November 2011, a victim was at the Msogwaba cemetery when the accused and his co-perpetrator emerged."

She said Zulu and his accomplice held the victim up with a knife and a firearm. He then raped the woman on a tombstone while his accomplice pointed a firearm at her.

According to Nyuswa, Zulu was identified in November 2014 after he and unknown accomplices accosted another victim in Pienaar.

"They took the victim's cellphone and dragged her to Hope of the Nations Ministry Church and took turns raping her," she said.

Zulu was arrested after one of the victims identified him to the police. He was positively linked to other rape cases after a buccal swab was taken of him.

During the court proceedings, Zulu pleaded not guilty and claimed that he and the victim who had identified him had consensual sex.

The court declared Zulu unfit to work with children and ordered that his name be entered into the National Register for Sex Offenders.

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