Friday, 7 March 2008

Brutal attacker 'under a spell'

06/03/2008 23:36 - (SA)

Henry Cloete

Vryburg - The alleged attacker of Anna Viljoen, 86, who assaulted her, presumably raped her and "injured her internally" with a sharp object, has been arrested.

Viljoen, who is fighting for her life in the Medi-Clinic's intensive-care unit in Bloemfontein, was attacked on her daughter and son-in-law's farm near Vryburg on Saturday.

Captain Charlize van der Linden said a 20-year-old suspect was arrested in the early hours of Wednesday in Stella, and appeared in Vryburg Regional Court on charges of housebreaking with intent to rape, rape and attempted murder.

"The hearing has been postponed to March 14 for legal aid and a bail application," said Van der Linden.

Viljoen was presumably internally injured with a small hunting knife which has been missing from the house.

Viljoen's daughter, Suzette van Tonder, said the investigating officer had told them the suspect, who previously had been employed by her husband, HP van Tonder, admitted guilt to the charges, but claimed he had been "under a spell" when he committed the deeds.

Suzette said that although her mother had stabilised, the doctor had told them that she was "not out of danger".

Replacing blood-soaked bedding

"Her age counts against her. Because she is so old, complications can still arise."

She says she and her husband are still "disoriented and in shock" regarding the attack.

They left briefly for the farm on Thursday, to replace carpets and curtains that had been soaked with her mother's blood.

According to hospital spokesperson Amanda Appelgryn, Viljoen is in a stable condition, but still connected to breathing apparatus.

"They are in the process of taking her off this, however."

Appelgryn told Volksblad earlier that this incident was "the one that has shaken me the most" in the time she has worked at the Medi-Clinic.


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