South Africa, Pretoria – A 34-year-old Limpopo man has been sentenced to life imprisonment by the Mankweng Regional Court after he was convicted for raping a 10-year-old child, the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) in Limpopo said on Thursday.
The name of the accused is concealed in order to protect the identity of the minor child.
Limpopo NPA spokesperson Mashudu Malabi-Dzhangi said the convicted rapist was the victim’s neighbour who frequently visited her home.
“On 21 March 2019, the accused was at his homestead when the victim was sent to a shop. The accused immediately disappeared as soon as the victim left. The victim did not come back until it became late and people started looking for her until they found her,” said Malabi-Dzhangi.
“The victim came back with a R20 note and she reported that it was given to her by [the] accused after he raped her. People also noticed that the child’s movements were strange as if she was feeling pain when she walks.”
The girl was taken to the hospital for a medical exam, and a case was reported to the police.
“The victim reported that the accused called her to an unfinished house and undressed her before raping her. He gave her R20 to buy snacks. She also revealed that this is the third occasion that the accused raped her in the same unfinished house,” said Malabi-Dzhangi.
In court, the accused pleaded not guilty to the charges.
“The State, represented by Advocate Makgomothi Masehela handed in the DNA results which linked the accused to the offence. The State had to lead evidence to prove the chain of DNA evidence,” said Malabi-Dzhangi.
“The DNA results were crucial in that they proved that the accused indeed raped her as per internal vaginal swabs taken from her.”
The victim impact statement from the girl’s mother was also handed to the court during sentencing.
It outlines that the pre-teen, now 11-years-old, is said to have developed a short temper and exhibits angry emotions after the traumatising rape incident.
Her school performance was also found to have deteriorated significantly.
Malabi-Dzhangi said the court could not find compelling circumstances to deviate from the prescribed minimum sentence, and jailed the accused to life imprisonment for rape.
African News Agency (ANA)