Baby Norton killer pleads for pardon

The youngest of the five killers facing sentence for the murder of baby Jordan-Leigh Norton yesterday asked the Norton family to forgive him.

The youngest of the five killers facing sentence for the murder of baby Jordan-Leigh Norton yesterday asked the Norton family to forgive him.

Bonginkosi Sigenu, 18, was the only one of the five to testify in the Cape high court in mitigation of sentence.

The others, Dina Rodrigues, Sipho Mfazwe, Mongezi Bobotyane and Zanethemba Gwade, have all indicated that they would not testify and that their lawyers would instead address the court on their behalf in mitigation.

Rodrigues is to be sentenced for murder while the others are all to be sentenced for murder and aggravated robbery.

Sigenu was asked by his counsel, Caryl Verrier, if he had anything to say to the Norton family, all seated behind Sigenu. He replied: "I'm aware of how deeply I have wronged them but I just want them to hear me now.

"I know it will be difficult for them to forgive this. What I have said in court is also what I want them to know. I would love them to forgive me, but not so that I can be released."

He said the court had to understand that "these things do happen". Concerning the relatives of his co-accused, he said: "I want them to understand that what I have said in court I did not say to jeopardise my co-accused.

"I have merely told the court the truth."

Sigenu said he was aware that there were people in court watching him, some with hatred.

"I know I have done this. I would also love for people to see me outside, once I am released from prison, regardless of how long it will take.

"People must not have fears of me - they must not do everything in their power to get their children out of my way."

Sigenu pleaded with the court to realise that there were "so many things happening down here which may sound unbelievable".

He said he had been under great pressure himself, but realised that he had to talk. He said it was just his luck that he had been able to talk.

Earlier during yesterday's proceedings, prosecutor Nicolette Bell informed the court that Sigenu had one previous conviction for armed robbery.

Sigenu explained that he was convicted in the Bellville regional court of armed robbery involving two women from whom he had stolen a cellphone.

For this he had been sentenced to five years correctional supervision, involving part prison and part house arrest.

Sigenu told that the court that he was mad about soccer and was busy writing a book about himself.

He said his dream was to start a children's centre in which he would teach young children about crime and its consequences. The case continues today. - Sapa

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