Twelve years after murdering Felicity Cilliers on Longlands Farm near Stellenbosch, the Western Cape High Court has sentenced Andrew Jordaan to life in jail.
Judge Lister Nuku said the convicted killer had not shown any remorse for his crimes and hadn’t even apologised to her family.
“The accused not only violated her dignity and privacy by raping her, but also killed her in cold blood for no reason. His crime is heinous and his actions can only be described as callous,” Nuku said.
Cilliers, 31, was found raped and strangled in a vineyard on the farm four days after her murder in 2007. A rock had also been thrown at her head.
More than a decade after her death, Jordaan – a family friend – was arrested in Ladysmith in July last year, and was later connected to the case through DNA evidence.
Nuku said Jordaan showed a propensity for violence against women because a month after the attack on Cilliers, he committed another similar crime, for which he was also convicted.
He was out on parole when he was apprehended for Cilliers’ murder.
The court heard that he was being treated for depression after he attempted suicide twice.
The defence argued that prior to the attack on Cilliers in May 2007, he hadn’t committed any violent sexual offences. In addition, the defence submitted that he had been under the influence of alcohol at the time the crimes were committed, that he was raised in a dysfunctional family and that he did not re-offend since he was released on parole in 2013 for the subsequent crime.
Nuku, however, pointed out that Cilliers had known and trusted Jordaan because she and her family used to socialise with him on weekends and regarded him as a friendly person.
Cilliers’ three children were left without a mother and had been badly affected by her death, turning to drugs to deal with what happened to her, pre-sentencing reports read.
Nuku said this victim had been defenceless and there was no evidence showing that he had somehow been provoked.
Furthermore, the fact that Jordaan had taken Cilliers to a secluded area before killing her showed there had been a level of planning involved.
Jordaan elected not to testify during sentencing proceedings and would not tell the probation officer what had happened prior to the commission of the crime, he pointed out.
Nuku said the accused had not shown any remorse for what he had done.
He had also given conflicting evidence during the trial, initially denying that he had had sex with Cilliers, but later changing his story when faced with DNA evidence.
“But why the accused committed these crimes remains a mystery.”
In addition to the maximum sentence for Cilliers’ murder, Jordaan was handed 10 years for rape.