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I want to talk to these devilish men, to tap into their psyche

Businessman Sandile Mantsoe was sentenced to 32 years in prison last month for the murder of his girlfriend Karabo Mokoena last year. He also burnt her body.
Businessman Sandile Mantsoe was sentenced to 32 years in prison last month for the murder of his girlfriend Karabo Mokoena last year. He also burnt her body.
Image: Alaister Russell

I am a sucker for a crime story. From the time I learnt to string together a sentence, I have always enjoyed reading a potboiler on twisted individuals doing inhuman things for one reason or another.

I am also known to binge on crime series on the small screen and I have a decent collection of serial killer documentaries.

Perhaps it comes with the territory of living in a country that has no shortage of devils on two feet. According to reports, there are over 200 serial killers and rapists roaming our streets. Let that sink in for a minute.

There is no doubt about the danger lurking on our streets and even in our homes.

The crimes I cannot stomach are those that involve children.

I was particularly galled when I attended the rape case of Baby M, whose mother was sentenced to life behind bars for shielding her child's rapist.

There must be a special place in hell reserved for such people.

The killers of babies and the elderly have the souls of zombies.

My stomach retched this year when Fanyana Ndlovu was sentenced to two life terms in prison for kidnapping a four-year-old girl in Malherbe, Benoni, and raping her vaginally and anally.

The little victim's injuries were so severe her genitals required extensive surgery.

A custodial sentence seemed too kind for the likes of Ndlovu, but in the absence of a hangman, we can only hope he will never walk free again.

I am still reeling from what Judge Peet Johnson said when he sentenced Sandile Mantsoe to 32 years last month. The judge described the killer of Karabo Mokoena as a "devil in disguise" before throwing the book at him.

Perhaps former prisons minister Sipho Mzimela had a point when he suggested years ago that disused mine shafts should be converted into prisons. Unfortunately, human rights organisations stymied his proposal.

This week, a 17-year-old girl was rescued from her abductors in a suspected brothel in North West after allegedly being kidnapped and forced into prostitution.

I doubt that such animals deserve to enjoy human rights. It is for this reason that I intend to visit some of these damaged souls in prisons and have conversations to try and tap into their psyche.

Perhaps this would help us to see the signs and take precautions to protect ourselves and our loved ones before tragedy strikes.

I have seen the pain of the victim's families when the offender is eventually found guilty and sent to prison.

Their overriding regret is that a monster will continue enjoying his life while the sentence would never bring their child back.

Watch this space.

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