Former estate agent Penny Sparrow has been convicted of crimen injuria.

Durban - Former KwaZulu-Natal estate agent Penny Sparrow was convicted in the Scottburgh Magistrate’s Court on Monday of crimen injuria in relation to racist comments that she made at the start of the year comparing black people to monkeys.

Magistrate Vincent Hlatshway handed Sparrow a R5 000 fine, or or 12 months imprisonment.

National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokeswoman Natasha Ramkisson-Kara said that Sparrow was sentenced to an additional two years, which was wholly suspended for five years, during which time she must not be convicted of crimen injuria.

She was also ordered to make a public apology for her remarks over the social media platform Facebook – the very platform over which she vented her rage against black South Africans, referring to them as “monkeys”, who if allowed loose on the country’s beaches, would cause “huge dirt and troubles and discomfort to others”.

Sparrow was convicted on her own guilty plea.

The charge against Sparrow was brought by Democratic Alliance member and Black Like Me founder Herman Mashaba.

In June, Equality Court Magistrate Irfaan Khalil ruled that Sparrow had to pay R150 000 to the Oliver and Adelaide Tambo Trust to atone for her posting.

In that case Sparrow was also ordered to pay the legal fees of the African National Congress, who brought the matter before the Equality Court. Sparrow did not appear in court for that case, but has appeared on all occasions in connection with the crimen injuria charge.