A Limpopo man was sentenced to three life terms in prison for the murder of Samson Sithole, 3, and the rape and murder of Boitumelo Ramatsobane Matsekoleng, 6
The Limpopo High Court sitting in Polokwane rejected his attempt at a plea deal, and his explanation that he was intoxicated at the time, and that he was sorry.
Samson was killed on 6 December 2018 and his lifeless body found with severe head wounds in bushes near Koteng village.
Limpopo National Prosecuting Authority spokesperson Mashudu Malabi-Dzhangi said Charles Moswathupha, 35, from Koteng infomal settlement in Marble Hall, disappeared when he heard police were on his trail.
He was caught in October 2019 after he had raped and throttled Boitumelo in Seregeng village, Nebo.
Villagers had rounded on him, and he had shown them where he had left her. She had been raped and was so severely injured that she died after two weeks of intensive care. He was also attacked by an angry group at the time.
The charge of attempted murder he faced for the attack on Boitumelo changed to murder after she died.
Malabi-Dzhangi said after Moswathupha’s plea and sentence agreement of 28 years was rejected, he tendered a plea of guilty, and was found guilty as charged.
Prosecutor Kgoputso Sekhukhune had submitted, in aggravation of sentence, that Moswathupha had killed defenceless children who looked up to him as an elder who could protect them.
Sekhukhune argued that the offences were heinous enough to warrant the prescribed minimum sentence.
The Director of Public Prosecutions in the province, advocate Ivy Thenga, welcomed the sentence, and hoped it would send a clear message to would-be offenders.
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