Seven life sentences for serial rapist

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Pretoria - The Mankweng Regional Court in Limpopo has sentenced a 24-year-old serial rapist to seven life sentences, Limpopo police said on Sunday.

Zacharia Mogale Selowa, who would lie and wait for students going home, would threaten his victims with a knife and force them to the local cemetery before violently raping them and robbing them out of their belongings.

On Friday, the court sentenced him to seven life sentences and 130 years on 12 counts of rape, five counts of robbery and one of kidnapping.

Brigadier Hangwani Mulaudzi said that Selowa had attacked and raped 11 University of Limpopo (Turfloop) women and a 14-year-old minor just a month after being granted bail for raping a 32-year-old woman.

Selowa’s reign of terror started in March 2012 after he was arrested and released on bail for raping and robbing a 32-year-old female friend in December 2011. 

Between March and October 2012, he raped the 14-year-old and 11 other female students all aged between 18 and 19 years old.  One of the university students was kidnapped and raped repeatedly for a day before she managed to flee through a window of a disused house.

“His offending came to light only when she alerted the local police – with Selowa continuing to commit offences while on police bail. Over a period of eight months, 11 other victims reported to the police of their horrifying ordeal providing the description of - at that time - unknown perpetrator and the same modus operandi executed,” said Mulaudzi.

Convinced that they had a suspect, police convinced the local magistrate to grant them an order to acquire DNA from Selowa, which was permitted. The DNA evidence linked Selowa to the 12 rapes. He was arrested in October 2012.

“This outcome is indicative of the hard work by the investigating officer and specialised disciplines of the SAPS, whom I am extremely proud of. The court could not have passed a more fitting sentence and this will certainly send out a strong message that crime does not pay,” said Limpopo Provincial Commissioner, Lieutenant General Sehlahle Masemola. – SAnews.gov.za

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