Northern Cape man who raped, killed his mother loses bid to appeal double life sentence

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Paul Conradie, who raped and killed his mother, lost a bid to appeal his double life sentence.
Paul Conradie, who raped and killed his mother, lost a bid to appeal his double life sentence.
PHOTO: Charles O'Rear, Getty Images
  • The Northern Cape High Court dismissed Paul Conradie's application to appeal the double life sentence he received for raping and killing his mother in 2020.
  • Conradie cited several reasons for his appeal, including that he could be rehabilitated and that he had spent almost three years in prison before the trial.
  • The court said Conradie's lack of remorse meant the possibility of rehabilitation was "somewhat distant and remote".

Paul Conradie, who raped and murdered his mother in February 2020, lost his bid in the Northern Cape High Court to appeal against his sentence.

In his application, Conradie said the court erred in sentencing him to double life sentences for the crimes.

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He argued that he was intoxicated when he committed the crimes and could be rehabilitated. He also pleaded with the court to consider that he had spent two years and eight months in prison before his trial and conviction for the crimes. 

Conradie raped and murdered his mother on 2 February, after a Sunday service in Modder River. 

The two had lunch at the church and travelled home, where they drank homemade beer. He then raped and strangled his mother, who was found lying under a tree with her skirt pulled up to her waist. He was reportedly found lying next to her.

Judge Lawrence Lever disputed that Conradie was under the heavy influence of alcohol when he committed the crimes, saying up to five hours had passed after he and his mother consumed the homemade beer and had a meal. 

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The court stated that while he could be rehabilitated, Conradie failed to show remorse and maintained his innocence even after his conviction.

It ruled that the lack of remorse meant "the possibility of rehabilitation had to be considered somewhat distant and remote". 

The court said Conradie's argument about already serving time before being sentenced did not hold, as this constituted him serving a minimum of his life imprisonment sentence.

"The issue of the applicant being in custody for some two years and eight months before conviction and sentencing must be considered in the context of him facing a prescribed minimum sentence of 'life imprisonment'. This is an indeterminate sentence, time spent in custody awaiting the completion of the trial does not directly affect the period spent in custody after sentencing," Lever ruled.

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