The Pietermaritzburg High Court has sentenced two friends to double life and five years imprisonment, and 30 years imprisonment respectively, after they pleaded guilty to the kidnapping and rape of a 38-year-old woman in December 2022, in the Ngwelezane area, KwaZulu-Natal.
Lindokuhle Psychology Mzimela (25) pleaded guilty to the kidnapping, rape, and murder, while his friend Khetha Prince Zulu (19) pleaded guilty to the kidnapping and rape.
Natasha Ramkisson-Kara, spokesperson for the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) said in their pleas, they mentioned that before the incident, they had spent time consuming alcohol at a tavern.
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“When that tavern closed, they decided to visit another one and met the woman and her companion on the way. They planned to rob them of their cell phones, and Mzimela produced a knife. The man who was with the woman ran away, leaving her behind.
“She told Mzimela and Zulu that she did not have a cellphone and they decided to rape her. They took her to a nearby abandoned structure where Mzimela asked her to undress.
When she refused, he stabbed her in her stomach and chest area until she removed her clothes, and they both raped her.
“Mzimela said that he was afraid she might report them to the police, so he slit her throat. They waited for her to go still before they fled the scene, and they were arrested a few days later.”
In court, Ramkisson-Kara said deputy director of public prosecutions, advocate Mbongeni Mthembu, handed in a victim impact statement compiled by the woman’s sister and facilitated by court preparation officer Seneliso Magdeline Sibanda.
The woman’s sister said that the woman was a hard worker, who was friendly and independent and a loving mother and sister. Her death has left a big void in their lives and they are struggling to get over the pain of losing her.
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Mzimela was sentenced to two life sentences, for murder and rape, and five years for kidnapping. He will serve effective life imprisonment.
In sentencing Zulu, Ramkisson-Kara said the court considered his age and his remorse, and he was sentenced to five years for kidnapping and 25 years for rape. He will serve an effective 25 years imprisonment.
“The NPA welcomes the swift finalisation of this matter and commends the work done by the prosecutor and the investigating team and hopes it will send a deterrent message to perpetrators,” said Ramkisson-Kara.