Family of rape victim in fear after threats

THE family of a Limpopo woman whose rape case was postponed 48 times over a period of nine years before her rapists were jailed for 15 years is living in fear.

THE family of a Limpopo woman whose rape case was postponed 48 times over a period of nine years before her rapists were jailed for 15 years is living in fear.

The woman, now aged 22, was raped by two neighbours when she was 14 in 2000.

She was not at home in the early hours of Sunday morning when two armed men stormed into the family home in Malebitsa village in the Moutse area demanding to know where she was.

Earlier this year villagers Hendrick Masuku Matlanato and Tsomi Skosana were jailed for 15 years each for raping the then teenage girl.

After they were sent to jail, the young woman told the police her life was in danger after she received death threats from one of the two men.

Her mother said yesterday the family was now living in fear after the incident.

"They didn't take anything. They only asked where my daughter was and after I told them that she was not home, they left.

"They said she would regret her move to have her assailants in jail," she said.

The two rapists abducted the teenage girl from a tavern and raped her at a nearby vacant house.

She reported the matter but by last year her attackers had still not been tried. This changed when Sowetan reported on how the system had failed her. A few months after publication, her attackers were convicted and jailed.

The National Prosecuting Authority cited a magistrate's ill health and the appointment of a Legal Aid attorney for the accused as some of the reasons for the delay.

Dennilton police spokesperson Director Daniel Moinyane said the latest threat was being investigated.

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