Rape sentence heavy, but you deserve it - CJ
MBABANE – Chief Justice, Michael Ramo-dibedi, has told a rape convict that his 18-year-sentence was hea-vy, but he deserved it.
Friday Magagula had his appeal against a sentence for raping his six-year-old niece dismissed yesterday by the Supreme Court.
He had submitted that the sentence was too harsh and induced a sense of shock.
Ramodibedi presided over the matter and Judges Bheki Maphalala and Emmanuel Agim unanimously agreed with him.
He said High Court Judge, Esther Ota, who had sentenced Magagula, rightly found that there were aggravating factors and had taken into account that Magagula had violated an innocent and defenceless child.
He also said it was also taken into account that he had broken the trust his brother’s daughter had in him and had infected her with a sexually transmitted infection.
Magagula, the Supreme Court was told, shared the same homestead with the complainant who cannot be named for ethical reasons.
He, in May 2009, took her to the family’s maize fields and made her lie on branches he had cut from a tree and raped her. He then promised her chips and warned her not to tell anybody of her ordeal. However, she did and Magagula was subsequently arrested.
"In passing the sentence the High Court (Ota J) commendably took into account the triad consisting of the offence, the offender and the interests of society," Ramodibedi said.
He added, "The sentence of 18 years imprisonment imposed upon the appellant was undoubtedly heavy, but it was, in my view, entirely warranted in the circumstances of the case." Senior Crown Counsel Lomvula Hlophe represented the Crown and Magagula appeared in person.
15-year sentence confirmed
MBABANE – The Supreme Court has confirmed a sentence of 15 years for the rape of a child.
Zimele Samson Magagula was convicted of raping a four-year-old girl. The Crown alleged that aggravating circumstances existed.
Magagula raped the girl on April 26, 2008 after he abducted her from her father while at her parental home. He had been given a lift by the girl’s father, who is his relative.
The girl’s father left his daughter with Magagula and on his return, they were nowhere to be found.
He proceeded to where they had left the car, but they were not there.
When he called out for them, Magagula emerged from the nearby bushes and apologised to the survivor’s father.
This happened on a Satur-day, April 26, 2008.
On the Monday, while the survivor was being bathed, she complained of pains. The child told them that Magagula had raped her. When confronted, he denied the allegations.
Magagula was arrested on June 3, 2008.
He was tried and convicted by the High Court and subsequently sentenced to 15 years imprisonment.
He then appealed against both the sentence and conviction. The appeal was dismissed and the sentence was upheld.
Dismissing the appeal, Judge Ebrahim said he was satisfied that the appellant was properly convicted. He held that the evidence of the survivor was very clear and precise. "In my view, the complainant has not manufactured the allegations that she was raped by the appellant. There is nothing to suggest, applying all the cautionary steps necessary in determining the truthful-ness of the complainant, that the learned judge got it wrong when convicting the appellant," Justice Ebrahim said.
Confirming the sentence, Judge Ahmed Ebrahim held that Magagula behaved in a very barbaric manner in raping a four-year-old girl.
"He has shown no remorse. In my view, he deserves no sympathy," His Lordship stated.
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