Serial rapist handed 150 years imprisonment

Provincial Commissioner, Lt Gen Nomthetheleli Mene has applauded the 150 years imprisonment imposed on a serial rapist in the Mthatha High court on 13 December 2023. She also applauded the excellent investigation skills of the Provincial Head Office Family Violence Child Protection and Sexual Offences Unit (Serial and Electronic Crime Investigation- SECI) for ensuring justice for the victims and a lengthy incarceration of the accused.

During 2015-2018, Thobani Mhlanganiso (30) from Xeni locality, Lujecweni A/A in Tsolo instilled unspeakable fear in girls and women between ages 08 – 45 years old in the area of Tsolo and one case in Mthatha. He broke into their houses, assaulted them with threats to kill the victims, demanded money and their possessions before finally raping them. In all these cases he was an unknown suspect, and the cases were closed however at the end of 2021, D/Sgt Siyamcela Patrick Mafuduka from SECI had taken over the seemingly ‘dead’ dockets and in May 2022, he made a breakthrough in the cases.

Through thorough and meticulous investigation, Mhlanganiso was linked through DNA. He was arrested at St Alban’s Prison in May 2022 whilst serving a 20 year jail term for a rape he committed in 2014. He was charged on thirteen counts of cases of housebreaking, rape and robbery with aggravating circumstances.

In June 2023, he was found guilty on all the charges and was sentenced on 13/12 to a total of 150 years of which he will effectively serve 30 years as most of the sentences are running concurrently.

Lt Gen Mene has praised the outstanding investigation of the detective officer for ensuring justice for the victims and a lengthy imprisonment for the accused. ’The SAPS is committed to protecting women, children and vulnerable groups and bringing the perpetrators of such crimes before the courts.  We are appreciative of the dedication of our detectives who tirelessly pursued and gave attention to every detail of the case as well as the sterling efforts of the prosecuting authority in ensuring convictions in court,’ added Lt Gen Mene.8

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