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Stepfather gets life sentence for raping stepdaughter

The Pretoria Magistrates’ Court on Thursday sentenced a 49-year-old man who raped his stepdaughter multiple times to life in prison.

According to the court, the child began experiencing the abuse at the age of 3 years when the stepfather assaulted her for the first time, and at the age of 7, when he started assaulting her physically and sexually until 2019.

During the incidents, the girls’ mother was either at work or away from their home in Willows, Pretoria East.

Luka Mahanjana, spokesperson for the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) Pretoria Region, says that in 2018 the complainant told her stepfather, known as Mr X, that she wanted to kill herself because she couldn’t cope with her circumstances.

“Instead, the step father threatened to kill her and her mother,” Mahanjana said.

In court records, the stepfather is referred to as Mr X so that the identity of the stepdaughter can be kept a secret.

According to Mahajana, after the stepfather raped her again on January 15, 2019, she told her boyfriend what had happened, and together they reported the incident to the school social worker, who informed the police.

“On the same day, the stepfather was arrested, but he was only remanded in custody after he was convicted.”

According to Mahajana, the child moved away from her parents for safety’s sake, while also receiving counselling.

During his trial, Mr X pleaded not guilty to the charges.

In court, the victim, however, testified that the incidents had affected her, and now she is a broken, dead person.

In aggravation of the sentence, the state prosecutor told the court that Mr X had abused a child he should have protected.

“It was deemed appropriate that the court impose the prescribed minimum sentence of life imprisonment on him since he showed no remorse for his actions.”

The court sentenced Stepfather, Mr X to a life term for one count of rape, 10 years each for three counts of rape, and 4 years each for sexual assault and assault with grievous body harm. The magistrate ordered the sentences to run concurrently.

NPA welcomes this sentence and hopes it will send a message to all those who commit violence against children.

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