The "Springs Monster" speaks to his lawyer in the High Court. Picture: Jacques Naude/African News Agency/ANA

Pretoria - The Springs monster was on Wednesday sentenced to a total of 67-years imprisonment for torturing his five children and raping his eldest daughter, but he will only have to serve an effective 35 years in prison.

His former wife was given a suspended sentence of five years imprisonment, suspended for five years. Gauteng High Court, Pretoria Judge ordered that she had to undergo psychotherapy during the duration of her five-year suspension or until her therapist felt she now longer needed help.

The 40-year-old man vowed to appeal his sentence. As he was led down to the holding cells by the police, he said: “I will appeal. I did not do all those things. I want to see my children again. They are my entire life.” 

His new girlfriend, who did not want her name mentioned as she has children, said she will stand by him in jail, as he was the love of her life. “He is a son of God. He has a heart of gold,” she told IOL.

The man was labelled a sadist and a psychopath by a psychiatrist who held various interviews with him. She said he remained a danger to those close to him. He was manipulative and tried to control everyone around him.

Judge Jordaan said he agreed with this finding and therefore the man had to go to jail for a long time. “One only has to look at his conduct towards especially his children to see this,” the judge said.

Regarding his former wife, Judge Jordaan said he accepted that she was a battered woman who also suffered under her husband’s beatings. He said the eldest two children even testified how their mother was tortured and assaulted at the hands of their father. 

Clinical psychologist Franco Visser, who issued a report regarding the mother to the court, was of the opinion that she was a defenceless victim. “I cannot differ,” the judge said.

The couple was arrested in May 2014, after their then 11-year-son ran to the neighbours for help as his father severely assaulted him. In this regard, the father was convicted of attempted murder on the boy.

The neighbours called the police, who swooped on the filthy house. Tales of horror followed, including how especially the oldest two children - aged 11 and 16 at the time - were tortured. 

The children were held captive in the house and not allowed to go to school. While the mother and the father were out during the day, the man monitored the movements of the children in the house by means of closed-circuit television.

The eldest children handed statements up to the court, in which they asked the judge to send both parents to jail for a very long time. Both said they hated their parents, especially their father. The son said he will also never forgive his mother, as she never did anything to help them when the father tortured them.

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