Police management in Mpumalanga Province has applauded South African Police Service (SAPS) members as well as security personnel for securing a hefty sentence against serial rapist, Philip Mathonsi, aged 36.
The accused was sentenced at Boschfontein Regional Court recently, after the court heard how residents of Marlothpark near Komatipoort, especially women, lived in fear for quite a while.
Major General Thulani Phahla, the Acting Provincial Commissioner of the South African Police Service in Mpumalanga, said Mathonsi reportedly robbed and raped the women between 2016 and 2017.
He said Mathonsi would normally wait until it was dark before preying on his victims, as in September 2016 when he broke into a certain house in Marloth Park, attacked and raped a 63-year old elderly woman then fled.
“On November 4, 2016, he also attacked and raped another woman aged 60 then.
Mathonsi has also on December 22, broke into another house in the same area, attacked and raped another elderly woman who was also 60 then.
“He, again, on January 29, attacked a 59-year-old woman, but fled the scene when security guards who were patrolling the area came to her rescue. On December 20, 2019, his luck ran dry when he was apprehended by security guards who then notified Police hence his sentencing.
“On the first rape count, he was sentenced to five years imprisonment, for robbery he got ten years, second rape, he got five years. He was further sentenced to another ten years for the third rape and five years for robbery.
“Mathonsi was meted with an additional ten years for housebreaking as well as two years imprisonment for attempted rape. The court has ordered that count one and two run concurrently whilst count three and four also run concurrently as well,” he said.
Phahla said the court further ordered that count five, run concurrently with count six and seven, as Mathonsi will spend 30 years effective behind bars.
He also stated that the accused’s particulars will also be entered into the National Register for Sex Offenders.
“We applaud the team of Investigators, the security personnel, Prosecution as well as the Judiciary for ensuring that justice is served for the victims that suffered gross human violations in their homes. We hope that the sentence will serve as a deterrent to others,” he added.