NATIONAL NEWS - Judge Mokhine Mosopa handed down a life sentence to convicted child rapist Nicholas Ninow on Thursday afternoon in the High Court in Pretoria.
This was cheered in court.
He was given five years for drug possession and another five for defeating the ends of justice, one to run concurrently with the life sentence.
He would also be placed on the sex offenders register.
The court had earlier heard arguments in mitigation and aggravation of sentence, with the state asking for the maximum of a life sentence and the 21-year-old Ninow himself pleading for clemency, arguing he would kill himself if sent to prison for life.
In his judgment, Mosopa referenced the scourge of gender-based violence in South Africa, and that the court had been asked not to be shy to impose sentences that could function as a deterrent.
Ninow had admitted on Wednesday that he did not care about the consequences of his actions when he’d raped a seven-year-old girl in the bathrooms of a toilet at the Dros restaurant in Silverton, Pretoria.
Ninow said recreational drugs had made him “angry and full of hatred” and that he was acting on impulse alone.
“Sober-minded, I would never have done such a thing, not to anyone, never mind a little child. I could not get physical with anyone sober, I am not violent,” he told the court.
He added that his grandmother would attest to his assertion that he was a “different person” when high. His grandmother, Pauline Gericke, did indeed testify in favour of Ninow’s character on Thursday, blaming Ninow’s mother for reintroducing him to drugs after he had been “clean” for some time.