South Africa News

24-year-old serial rapist from Limpopo sentenced to 3 life terms

Xolani Sebothoma (24) from Dennilton, Limpopo will be spending the rest of his life in prison after he was convicted and sentenced to three life terms and an additional 65 years of imprisonment for multiple counts of rape.

The Middelburg High Court sentenced and convicted Sebothoma on Friday after he pleaded guilty to the charges on four counts of rape, assault, housebreaking, and robbery with aggravating circumstances for crimes he committed in the Nkangala district between July 2019 and February 2020.

Sebothoma, who was described as showing no remorse by Senior State Advocate Themba Lusenga, committed his first offence on 1 July 2019, when the first complainant was walking with her friends in Moteti.

Sebothoma confronted the group and told them that they were making a noise. After the complainant’s friends ran away, he grabbed the victim, dragged her to an empty RDP house and raped her.

Accused raped two women on the same day

Shockingly, on the same day, another victim got off the bus and went to a hiking spot. While waiting, Sebothoma emerged and asked for R15.

“He then dragged the victim to the back of the shade, assaulted her, and raped her more than once. He then fled the scene with the complainant’s cell phone and money,” said National Prosecuting Authority regional spokesperson Monica Nyuswa.

Months later, on 16 September 2019, Sebothoma broke into the third complainant’s house, assaulted her, raped her, and robbed her of her cell phone and sneakers.

His crime spree was eventually brought to the police’s attention on 11 September 2020 when he entered a house in Moteti and found the fourth complainant sleeping with her boyfriend.

“He produced a firearm, dragged the complainant to the living room, and raped her more than once. He then fled the house with the victims’ cell phones,” Nyuswa said.

Sebothoma arrested in September 2020

The victim reported the matter and was able to identify Sebothoma to the police, who was subsequently arrested. The police were also able to link him to other crimes using buccal swabs.

While addressing the court, Lusenga said rape is a repulsive crime; it is an invasion of the private and intimate zone of a woman and strikes at the core of her personhood and dignity, according to Nyuswa.

Lusenga further told the court that Sebothoma did not show remorse by requesting the court impose a prescribed minimum sentence.

“Victim impact statements compiled by the victims, facilitated by Court Preparation Betty Masango, in which the victims detailed the pain and suffering caused by the accused, were presented in court. Judge Kgankie Phahlamohlako found no substantial and compelling circumstances to deviate from the prescribed minimum sentence,” Nyuswa said.

Sebothoma sentenced the accused to three life terms and 65 years of imprisonment.

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