Pretoria – The Polokwane regional court has sentenced a 36-year-old man to life imprisonment for the rape of a 10-year-old girl, the National Prosecuting Authority said on Friday.
The man was a friend of the uncle’s child and a well-known person in the community as he had a tuck-shop, NPA Limpopo spokesperson Mashudu Malabi-Dzhangi said.
“On 1 December 2017, the accused lured the child to the bushes under the pretence that he was going to buy her chips and sweets, before raping her,” Malabi-Dzhangi said.
Community members apprehended the man on the day of the incident after the child pointed him out in the street.
“During the trial, the accused pleaded not guilty, denying ever touching the complainant on the day of the incident. Regional court prosecutor, Andisa Mudau, led the testimony of the uncle and the granny [of the minor] who told the court that before the rape, the complainant was performing well at school, was friendly and she used to play with other children,” said Malabi-Dzhangi.
“However, since the incident, her schoolwork had declined and she was withdrawn.”
In aggravation of sentence, Mudau asked for the imposition of the prescribed minimum sentence, which is life imprisonment.
“The court concurred with the state and sentenced the accused to life imprisonment,” said Malabi-Dzhangi.
The regional director of public prosecutions in Limpopo, advocate Ivy Thenga, welcomed the sentence and expressed hope that the lengthy jail term would send a clear warning to would-be offenders.
African News Agency (ANA)