WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT
Three men have been arrested after they were filmed torturing a nine-year-old boy for allegedly stealing in Klapmuts in the Western Cape.
In a nearly seven minute-long video, three grown men can be seen torturing a young boy in a horrendous way.
The video was filmed on January 27, at premises at the railway houses in the area and has since gone viral on social media platforms.
The suspects are aged between 21 and 34.
The video begins with the boy in clear distress, crying as a man in a white vest is seen holding his hand. Attached to the boy’s hand is a steel hand-held saw linked to jumper lead clamps attached to a white VW Golf battery.
Another man dressed in a black T-shirt approaches, and in the background, a young woman’s voice can be heard.
The two men start tying cable ties around the young boy’s wrists, attached to the saw.
The woman is heard saying: “dan slat julle hom, ja” (then you hit him, yes).
One of the men can be heard saying the boy just has to speak the truth.
The child’s sobs grow louder as the cable ties are tightened and he shouts: “ouch, my hand”.
Children can also be heard in the background, laughing and having a conversation.
After both the boy’s hands are tied to the saw, the man in the black T-shirt reconnects the jumper lead clamps to the battery and the man in the white vest starts hitting the clamps against the saw to which the boy’s hands are attached. The child again starts crying, as laughter breaks out in the background.
The boy starts shouting: “mommy” and the man in the black T-shirt starts wetting the boy, using the hose pipe as they continue to electrocute him.
The electrical current hitting the steel of the saw can be heard. The boy starts screaming louder, shouting for his mother as sparks fly.
The man in the white vest then takes the clamps, sticks the boy’s fingers in it and asks if he is ready to tell the truth.
“Gaan jy weer steel?” (Are you going to steal again?) asks the man in black. The boy continues to cry. His torturer continues, and in anger, takes the boy's hands which are in front of him and shoves them behind his neck. Still attached are the saw and cable ties. He swears at the boy while the child is on his knees. He continues with the electrocution.
The boy continues to cry and a child can be seen entering the frame of the video.
A woman is heard saying: “maak los die klong, dis nou genoeg” (loosen the boy, it’s enough now). A child responds in rejection, stating the boy had stolen her mother’s phone. This seemed to have spurred the child’s torturers on.
A the child is moved away from the vehicle, the footage shows a toddler and older women all watching the ordeal as children continue to laugh in the background. The boy, dressed in shorts and T-shirt is then being hit across his arms and legs with a hose-like instrument. He screams in pain, still being tied to the saw.
The man in the white vests then moves towards a wheelie bin.
The person filming states: “in die drom” (in the bin). The already tortured boy is thrown into the bin, head-first, as his legs are being held by the man in the white vest. The person filming bursts out laughing, as a child in the background can be heard crying.
They ask for water. The bin is closed, a rock placed on top of it and the traumatised boy is screaming for his mother in fear. The screaming child is lifted right way up in the bin. His hands are released from the cable ties and saw. A third man, wearing only a shorts, joins the torturing duo.
A voice in the background then tells the boy: “sien jy wat gebeur met mense wat geld steel?” (do you see what happens to people who steal money?).
The boy is made to get down into the bin again, but the man in the white vest demands that he lay upside down. He then positions the boy himself. The child’s feet can be seen dangling and a big thud can be heard as he most likely landed on his head at the bottom of the bin.
The bin is closed, moved a bit and a big rock placed at the top. Again, laughter can be heard.
As the boy screams, the bin is being hit by a belt, the bear-chested man demands the child stops screaming.
The boy shouts to his attackers, saying he is going to tell his father, they laugh and a hosepipe is placed in the bin and the tap is opened.
They egg him on to tell his father. The man in the black T-shirt even checks to see if the bin is filling with water.
A source told IOL one of the suspects is allegedly serving a suspended sentence, while unconfirmed reports claim the young boy is mentally challenged.
Western Cape police spokesperson, Colonel Andre Traut confirmed the trio are behind bars.
“In response to your enquiry, kindly be advised that this office can confirm that three suspects are being detained following their arrest on a charge of assault with the intent to cause grievous bodily harm (GBH) for an incident that was perpetrated on January 27, at an address at the railway houses in Klapmuts,” Traut said.
He also confirmed the suspects have appeared in the Paarl Magistrate’s Court.
“Justin Limco, 21, Nathan Niewenhuis, 24, and Zane Marthinus, 34, are being accused of an assault on a nine-year-old boy. Their last court appearance was yesterday (Tuesday) in Paarl, and the case has been postponed for a bail application.
“The date is yet to be determined as the case docket is still at court,” Traut said.