Pretoria - The Gauteng High Court, Pretoria will on Thursday deliver its verdict in the high profile so-called Springs monster trial.
The father is facing 22 charges, ranging from rape and child abuse to the attempted murder of his then 11-year-old son. The mother is facing 20 charges, also relating to the alleged abuse and neglect of their five children, aged between three and 16 in 2014 when the couple were arrested.
The State called for both parents, who are in their late 30’s, to be convicted.
The timid looking mother claimed that she too, was a victim of her abusive husband and that she was helpless to defend her children against him.
But the State argued that the mother is also guilty, as she did not lift a hand to help her children.
The illiterate mother claimed she was terrified of her bulky and aggressive husband at the time and that she had no choice but to do as he said.
The children are in a place of safety and neither of the parents have seen them since their arrest.
They were rescued from the so-called house of horrors after the police raided the double storey house in Springs when the neighbours contacted them. This was after the couple’s then 11-year-old son ran to the neighbours for help as his father had severely beaten him.
The police and social services uncovered what they called “a filthy nest” with rats “as big as puppies” running around the house. It was claimed that the mother, who was dressed in skimpy clothes when the police got there, often used drugs given to her by her husband and that she did not lift a finger when her husband abused the children.
The husband last year closed his case and declined to testify or call witnesses in his defence.
The man, also 39, was once again neatly dressed on Tuesday in a white shirt and tie and he appeared in high spirit as he was led from the holding cells to the dock by the police.
He smiled and laughingly talked to a group of friends who support him without fail during each court appearance.
His advocate indicated that if he was convicted, she will request a pre-sentencing report to, among others, set out the circumstances under which he grew up. The State, on the other hand, said it will present victim impact reports regarding the children to the court.
It was agreed that in case of a conviction, that sentencing proceedings will commence in the first week of October.
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