Tebogo Msimanga |
The Pretoria High Court sitting in Benoni, sentenced the Tsakane graveyard serial rapist Petetona Abel Lebele (43), to 3 life terms and 30 years of direct imprisonment. This is after he was found guilty of four counts of rape as well as four counts of kidnapping. These offences were committed against four females, ages 7, 13, 16, and 32 over 3 years, from January 2017 until August 2019, when he was arrested.
Gauteng NPA spokesperson Lumka Mahanjana said the court ordered that Lebele’s name be included in the National Register for Sexual Offenders. “His first and youngest victim was a 7-year-old minor. On 19 January 2017, when the minor was on her way to school, she met with Lebele, he called her and told her to come to collect sweets. The minor refused and started running, however, Lebele caught up with her and dragged her to the cemetery where he raped her”.
The accused later raped a 32-year-old woman on 19 August 2019, while she had her 2-year-old child on her back, whom he pushed to the ground and proceeded to rape the mother.
Mahanjana added that in court, Lebele pleaded guilty to the charges preferred against him. In his guilty plea, he told the court that he targeted his victims when they were on their way to school or home. He also told the court that he would grab and drag them to the Tsakane cemetery where he raped them.
The state prosecutor Advocate Lawrence Sivhidzho told the court that rape is traumatic, it does not only affect victims physically but emotionally too.