Two men sentenced to 20 years’ imprisonment for rape of 22-year-old woman
They raped the victim outside a local tavern in Thaba Lesoba, a village in the district of Sterkspruit, in 2016.
Mamello Mothibe, 22, and Tsepo Rampeyi, 25, were on Monday sentenced to 20 years’ imprisonment for raping a 22-year-old woman at the Sterkspruit Regional Court.
It is reported that the two men raped the victim outside a local tavern in Thaba Lesoba, a village in the district of Sterkspruit, on 16 October 2016.
The two men escorted the 22-year-old when she went outside the tavern to urinate and raped the intoxicated woman after they carried her to Mothibe’s home with two of their friends witnessing the crime.
The woman went home and reported the incident. She registered a case of rape at the Palmietfontein police station the next day.
Mothibe and Rampeyi were arrested after a brief investigation and was charged with rape.
Both men denied the charges during the trial claiming that they drank alcohol to an extent that they passed out and someone else might have committed the crime.
One of the friends who witnessed the rape as well as a person to whom the victim made the first report, testified against Mothibe and Rampeyi as part of the evidence provided by the state advocate, Loyiso Methuso.
The court ruled in favour of the victim, based on the evidence, and convicted both men on rape charges last year.
The defence attorney requested remand thereafter, but failed to appear again on multiple dates set by the court for sentencing. However, a new private attorney was hired and argued on behalf of the convicted rapists in mitigation of sentence.
The court found substantial and compelling circumstances existed justifying deviation from life imprisonment and subsequently sentenced each of them to 20 years’ imprisonment and they were declared unfit to possess firearms.
Mothibe and Rampeyi filed appeal applications, which were dismissed by the court.