Saturday, 16 December 2006

'I raped and robbed because life was unfair'

Tania Broughton

December 12 2006 at 08:52AM

A Lamontville man who raped and robbed a 62-year-old Brighton Beach, Bluff, woman at her home last month, said on Monday that he had committed the crimes because he had no job, no money and "thought life was unfair".

He admitted that the woman had been kind to him in the past and had often given him food, and once even a fridge.

But, he said, when he lost his job with a garden services company he had decided to turn to robbery "to make some quick money".

Thobile Ncanini, 27, was arrested by Brighton Beach detectives last Thursday.

He immediately confessed and told the police that he was sorry and wanted to see his victim so he could apologise to her.

Yesterday he wept continuously when he pleaded guilty before Durban High Court Judge Atkins Moleko.

His victim, whom he knew well because he had often worked in her neighbour's garden, was not in court.

In his written plea, he said that he had gone to the woman's house on November 9 armed with a knife and had entered through the kitchen door. He had worn a balaclava so that she would not recognise him.

"She was busy in the kitchen. I grabbed her and pointed my knife at her, demanding money," he said.

"She fell down, I assume out of shock, but I kept demanding that she give me money."

He said the woman had taken him to her bedroom and had given him R150 from her wallet.

"I asked her if this was the only money she had and she said that was all she could offer. She then took off her gold bracelet. I took off her necklace and took her cellphone."

He said that when he had told her that he was going to have sex with her, the woman had pleaded that she was too old for that.

"I nevertheless continued to cut off her pants and undress her. After raping her, I tied her hands with strips of her pants and fled."

Ncanini is facing minimum sentences of 15 years for robbery and 10 years for rape.

However, state advocate Nick de Klerk argued that the judge should impose more than the minimum sentence for the rape, because "rape is more serious than robbery".

"He humiliated his victim by raping her. He is a young man, he did not need to have sex with an older woman. She will have nightmares for years to come."

De Klerk said that society was "sick and tired" of abuse against women.

Sentence will be passed on Tuesday.

This article was originally published on page 3 of The Mercury on December 12, 2006


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