LUTENDO LIVHEBE – MUDAU. The Pretoria Magistrates` Court sentenced Amos Thulani Khumalo (47) to one life term and 8 years imprisonment for rape and attempted rape of two minors. The magistrate ordered that the sentence of 8 years should run concurrently with that of life imprisonment. He also ordered that his name be added to the National Register for Sexual Offenders, and he is declared unfit to possess a firearm. This is after he was convicted of the rape of a 13-year-old girl and the attempted rape of an 11-year-old girl.

On 20 November 2020, the two minors were walking back home from the shops in Sausville, Atteridgeville when they met with Khumalo, who forced them into the car and drove with them to town in Pretoria, where he went into a certain restaurant and ordered them to order alcohol. The children refused but he went on to buy alcohol for himself. He then took them to Pretoria Hotel where he booked a room. He told the receptionist that the minor children were his children and that he would sleep on the floor.

When they got to the room he assaulted them and proceeded to rape the 13-year-old and attempted to rape the 11-year-old. The 11-year-old got an opportunity to escape. He chased and caught up with her, but a security guard had already heard her scream. Khumalo was apprehended by security, handed over to the police and arrested on the same day.

In court, he pleaded guilty and asked the court to consider the fact that he pleaded guilty and showed remorse when imposing a sentence. However, Prosecutor Dru Ramsamy, told the court that rape is a violation of victims, and the two minors had to grow up faster because Khumalo decided to take their innocence. Furthermore, Khumalo had no regard for the law because he has two previous convictions. He committed these offences while he was out on probation for a similar offence of rape, where he was sentenced to seven years. He only pleaded guilty because the state had overwhelming evidence against him. She therefore asked the court not to deviate from the prescribed minimum sentence of life imprisonment.

When sentencing, the magistrate agreed with the state and said he was not convinced that compelling circumstances exist for him to deviate from imposing the prescribed minimum sentence. As an adult Khumalo had a responsibility to protect the children from any harm. Instead, he inflicted pain on them by raping one of them and attempted to rape the other. When committing these offences, he disregarded their feelings.

The NPA welcomes this sentence as fitting, especially at the time of the 16 Days of Activism on violence against women and children.

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