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I’ve lost the love of my life: woman recounts brutal attack in which her lover was stabbed to death

Mojalefa Simon Mokoena has been sentenced to 25 years direct imprisonment for the brutal murder of a lesbian woman Bonang Precious Gaelae last year. Picture: Supplied / NPA

Mojalefa Simon Mokoena has been sentenced to 25 years direct imprisonment for the brutal murder of a lesbian woman Bonang Precious Gaelae last year. Picture: Supplied / NPA

Published Jun 23, 2022

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Pretoria - The High Court in Pretoria, sitting in Palm Ridge, has sentenced 57-year-old Mojalefa Simon Mokoena to 25 years direct imprisonment for killing a lesbian.

National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) Gauteng regional spokesperson, Lumka Mahanjana said Mokoena was sentenced to 25 years for pre-meditated murder, eight years for attempted murder and five years for two counts of assault.

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The court ordered that the sentence run concurrently.

“On February 12, 2021, the deceased Bonang Precious Gaelae and her partner Francinah Mohanoe, who is also a complainant in the matter, had gone to purchase airtime from a tuck shop which was inside a yard that Mokoena owned,” Mahanjana said.

“An altercation broke between the couple and Mokoena. Mokoena assaulted the couple, who decided to leave and go buy the airtime elsewhere. As they left Mokoena went to his house to get a knife and waited for them.

“When he saw the couple again, Mokoena threw a brick at them, which hit Mohanoe.

“He proceeded to stab her and her partner. The community members stopped Mokoena, called the police and took the couple to the nearby hospital where Gaelae was pronounced dead on arrival due to stab wounds,” said Mahanjana.

Mokoena was arrested the following day, after Mohanoe did a pointing out to the police.

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He has been in custody since the arrest, after the prosecutor successfully opposed bail.

“In the victim impact statement, the mother of the deceased said she is hurt because she lost her only child who left behind her two minor children. Mohanoe said she is hurt because not only did she lose the love of her life, but suffered financially because of her medical costs and is now suffering psychologically after she was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder,” said Mahanjana.

Advocate Salome Scheepers, for the State, told the court that gender-based violence and hate crimes are a profound and widespread problem in South Africa, “impacting on almost every aspect of life”.

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“They (hate crimes) are a violation of human rights. The accused was not provoked but targeted defenceless women even after they left his premises,” Scheepers told the court.

She subsequently asked the court to impose a sentence which would send a deterrent message to the community.

Meanwhile, Director of Public Prosecutions in Gauteng, Advocate Sibongile Mzinyathi has praised community members for the role they played in the case, and also thanked the investigating officer, Sergeant Phale.

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Mzinyathi added that he hopes that the sentence will send a message that hate crimes would not be tolerated.

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