The Pretoria High Court on Monday has convicted a couple from Booysens in Tshwane, Wayne Loubser, 36, and Justine Loubser, 32, for child neglect, common assault and failure to register a child after they tried to sell their two-month-old baby for R500.
According to the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), the couple will be sentenced on 1 February 2021.
“Justine was further found guilty of human trafficking. This is after it was put on record in court that after the couple had the baby in April 2020 they did not register the child at the Department of Home Affairs with the intention of selling the baby and for the baby not to be traced back to them,” the NPA said in a statement.
The NPA said the Loubsers approached a woman named Saunders, who owned a food cart in Booysens around July-August 2020 and asked for her help to buy food and nappies for the child.
Saunders continued to buy nappies and baby formula for the baby, until a R2,000 and R2,500 offers were made separately by the couple to sell the child.
On 4 November, according to the NPA, Wayne came back to the food cart to enquire if Saunders had considered the offer.
“Saunders informed him that his wife also tried to sell the baby for R2,500. Wayne then reduced his price to R1,000.
“On 5 November midday, Justine went to the food cart to ask Saunders to reconsider buying the baby and reduced her offer to R500. On 6 November, Wayne went to the food cart to Saunders and threatened to kill the baby if she did not buy him.
“It was also put on record in court that the couple made the baby drink cool aid [sic] while the father ate the baby formula. The court also heard that the couple repeatedly assaulted the baby a number of times on different occasions. The mother would take the baby to her work place at a pub while the father would drop the child off at Saunders’ food cart while intoxicated.
“The police together with Saunders set an entrapment for the couple. The police gave Saunders R500 to buy the baby from the couple. The exchange took place outside the couple’s house between Justine and Saunders while Wayne was inside the house.”
The NPA says the baby has since been taken to a healthcare facility for observation while the couple remains in policy custody.