South Africa News

Northern Cape r@pist gets life sentence

A 33-year-old man from the Northern Cape has been sentenced to two life terms of imprisonment for rape in the Mothibistad Regional Court.

Lesetja Keikabile was convicted on two counts of rape.

According to the evidence before the court, on April 29, 2019, the 39-year-old victim and her friend met Keikabile while out with friends in the Mothibistad area.

Keikabile was in a local bar with the victim and other friends, and when it was time to leave, he requested a lift home as other friends would be driving in a different direction.

While driving to his residence, Keikabile gave the victim an incorrect address, and when they arrived at the place, he began to choke her in the vehicle.

The victim fought back, but this was in vain as Keikabile proceeded to rape her numerous times.

She reported the matter to her boyfriend, and with the help of friends, Keikabile was apprehended and handed over to the police the same evening.

According to the Northern Cape spokesperson for the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), Mojalefa Senokoatsane, the prosecution successfully opposed bail, and Keikabile was remanded in custody.

“But the matter was provisionally struck off the roll as the court was awaiting DNA evidence,” Senokoatsane said.

But he soon struck again.

On June 8, 2022, a second victim, an 18-year-old who was selling food outside a Mothibistad tavern, had decided to close early and join her sister for drinks at the tavern.

The victim met Keikabile at the tavern. At the time, he was out on warning for the first rape.

“When it was time to leave the tavern, the accused offered her a lift home, which she accepted as she also found him to have an engaging personality and had no reason not to trust him.

“The victim directed the accused to her home, where instead of dropping her off safely, the accused decided to drive to an abandoned area close to the complainant’s home.

“It was there that the accused proceeded to choke the complainant and thereafter raped her numerous times,” Senokoatsane said.

The victim sustained severe bruising to her throat as a result of being choked. She managed to escape and reported the incident to police the following day.

“The accused was arrested, and the prosecution successfully opposed bail again, and he was remanded until the conclusion of his case,” Senokoatsane said.

During the trial, State Prosecutor Bernice Bronkhorst told the court Keikabile had a clear modus operandi and argued his engaging personality created a false impression to the victims who thought he could be trusted.

The state further submitted Keikabile was a danger to society and showed no remorse as he committed the second crime while still on warning for the first case.

Acting Regional Magistrate Stephan Hinana found Keikabile did not present any substantial or compelling circumstances to motivate the court from deviating from the prescribed minimum sentences.

He was sentenced to life imprisonment on each rape charge.

-IOL

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