A Lesotho national who was employed as a shepherd in Quthing Mangolwaneng, a rural area in the district of Mount Fletcher, was sentenced to life in jail for robbing and raping a female who was walking to a neighbour's house to fetch keys.
The Mount Fletcher Regional Court has sentenced Lesotho immigrant Katleho Mpakanyane, 20, to life imprisonment for rape, 15 years for attempted murder, and five years for robbery with aggravating circumstances.
It is alleged that on the night of May 7, 2023, the victim was walking on her own from the local tavern. When she got to her homestead, she remembered that her keys were at her neighbour's house.
"Before she could get to the neighbour’s house, she felt something holding her from the back, and a sharp object was placed on her neck,” said NPA regional spokesperson Luxolo Tyali.
"At the time of the incident, Mpakanyane stayed in Quthing Mangolwaneng in the District of Mount Fletcher, where he was employed as a shepherd," Tyali said.
Tyali further added that Mpakanyane started stabbing her victim in the back, pushing her, and she fell on her stomach, and he turned her to face up as he continued stabbing her in the face and neck.
"He then raped her while placing a knife on her neck, after which he searched her and found a cell phone that he took before fleeing the scene,” Tyali said.
Police investigations led to Mpakanyane, who subsequently pleaded guilty to all three charges.
Regional court prosecutor Zonke Maranjana submitted to the court that no substantial and compelling circumstances justifying deviation from a prescribed minimum sentence exist.
“The prosecutor pleaded with the court to impose life imprisonment for rape. Regional Court Magistrate Sello Mokotjo agreed with the prosecutor and imposed a life sentence plus 20 years,” Tyali added.
Meanwhile, the Eastern Cape Director of Public Prosecutions, Barry Madolo, welcomed the sentence and commended the prosecutor and the investigating officer for securing the conviction and sentence.