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Bloemfontein - A Bloemfontein mother who repeatedly raped her son should be jailed for life, the Bloemfontein Sexual Offences Court heard on Wednesday.
Magistrate Jan Greyvenstein was hearing argument in the sentencing of the woman, who raped her son between the ages of 11
Prosecutor Louis York told the court this had been one of the most difficult cases in which to suggest a sentencing option.
“The State agrees to the psychological problems. She had a difficult youth, but she had a choice not to take it out on her own boy, despite the difficulty of her own life,” he argued.
The woman admitted having had sex with the boy without his consent. She confessed to raping him from December 2007 to January this year.
The State contended that the fact that the crime was committed within a close family circle, over a period of several years, outweighed any mitigating aspects.
“I feel sorry for her, just like anybody else, but this type of crime must be looked at seriously, even for first time offenders.... We must ask for life imprisonment,” York said.
He said the woman’s name should also be included in the sexual offences register.
The woman, with grey, shoulder-length hair, sat in the dock looking down at her hands during most of the argument on Wednesday. From time to time, she wiped her face with a handkerchief.
The court heard earlier that she had herself been sexually abused for several years.
Her counsel Themba Diba told the court she was also a victim in the case.
However, York argued that it had become a trend in family abuse cases for perpetrators to argue that they had been victims and had therefore done the same to somebody else.
“There is no way that what happened to the boy could be used by the accused as an excuse as to what happened to her.”
York argued that the mother’s abuse should be seen as aggravating because she knew what the effects of the abuse would be.
The State submitted there was nothing more repulsive to the general public than a parent having sex with their own child.
“There cannot be any guilt laid at the feet of the boy. He did nothing wrong in this matter.”
Arguing in mitigation, Diba submitted that the woman confessed when she was arrested, which was a sign of remorse.
Diba asked the court not to consider a sentence of life imprisonment.
He said the woman could not be “sacrificed” for all serious sexual crimes.
He contended that both the mother and the youth needed serious help and he suggested a short prison term with correctional supervision.
The matter continues next Wednesday.