By Jonk wa Mashamba
The Roodepoort Magistrates’ Court sentenced a 53-year-old father to 18 years imprisonment for the rape and sexual assault of his daughter.
The accused was married to the mother of the complainant from 1992 to 2019.
The court heard that the daughter was raped from 2010 to 2015 when she was seven to 12 years old.
The father started grooming her from that age, using the bible as his yardstick and would make her promise not to tell anyone.
Phindi Mjonondwane NPA Regional Spokesperson, said this happened until his daughter was old enough to understand that her father has violated her by fondling and inserting his finger on her private part.
Mjonondwane said she informed her mother about her ordeal and a few months after attending psychosocial sessions, she reported the matter to the police.
“In mitigating for a lesser sentence, the accused called several witnesses, including his ex-wife (the complainant’s mother), who testified that she does not wish for the accused to go to prison as that would only worsen her financial predicament.
“She said they met as a family at the psychologist’s office and discussed that the accused would make financial contributions towards the complainant’s university fees and further discussed correctional supervision as a sentencing option.
“In her Victim Impact Statement (VIS) the complainant detailed that it was the education she received from school about relationships and intimacy, that made her realise that her father took advantage of her and abused the position of trust,” said Mjonondwane.
Regional Court Prosecutor Danette van Schalkwyk, argued that though the accused took full responsibility for his actions, the court should consider that the complainant was left with scars for life, inflicted at the sanctity of her home by a person who was supposed to protect and love her.
Magistrate Anneline Afrika, sentenced the father to 18 years for rape and 5 years for sexual assault, citing that the court considered he pleaded guilty and was a first-time offender.
She further said that the court must apportion equal weight to the seriousness of the crime and the impact it had on the complainant.
Mjonondwane said the NPA abhors crimes of such heinous nature and hopes that the complaint found solace for her lost innocence.