NATIONAL NEWS - The kidnappers of 6-year-old Amy’Leigh De Jager have been convicted of kidnapping and attempted extortion today after entering into plea deals this week. De Jager was snatched from her mother’s car last year outside her school before the assailants demanded a R2 million ransom.
Former Grade RR teacher Tharina Human and her co-conspirators, Laeticia Nel, Pieter van Zyl and Bafokeng Molemo all received suspended sentences but are all expected to spend between eight and 10 years in prison.
For Human, on counts one and two (kidnapping and attempted extortion) she is sentenced to 15 years’ imprisonment (15 for count one and five for count two running concurrently) she faces 15 years’ imprisonment, of which five will be suspended. According to her defence lawyer, David Mey, she could be up for parole in about about five years.
According to Mey, Human is “very remorseful” for her actions and in her plea agreement, she discloses that she acted out of financial desperation.
“She is very sorry for her actions. She knew what was coming with this sentence, she has prepared for it and is looking forward to getting her sentence over and done with. She does plan to meet with Amy’Leigh’s parents at some point.”
Meanwhile, Nel is sentenced to eight years for kidnapping, three of which will be suspended and five for attempted extortion which will run concurrently with her first count. She will spend five years in prison with a chance of parole in about two and a half years.
Van Zyl is sentenced to 13 years imprisonment, but will effectively serve an eight-year term with a chance of parole in about four years. Molemo will serve seven years in prison and could get parole in about four years.