I expected Mantsoe to get life – Karabo’s dad

Keabetswe Mokoena (middle) during the memorial service of slain Karabo Mokoena at the Diepkloof Multipurpose Centre on May 17, 2017 in Soweto, South Africa. Photo: Gallo Images

Keabetswe Mokoena (middle) during the memorial service of slain Karabo Mokoena at the Diepkloof Multipurpose Centre on May 17, 2017 in Soweto, South Africa. Photo: Gallo Images

Karabo’s father says he expected Mantsoe to be sentenced to 15 years for assault and more than 15 years for burning his daughter’s body.

Karabo Mokoena’s father, Maugraigne Mokoena, told journalist after the sentencing of his daughter’s murderer, Sandile Mantsoe, that he did not expect the sentences handed down by the judge today.

Acting Judge Peet Johnson sentenced Mantsoe to five years in prison on assault, 30 years for murder and four years for obstruction of justice.

His effective sentence was 32 years in jail after some of the years in counts one and three were allowed to run concurrently with count two.

Karabo’s father said he expected Mantsoe to be sentenced to 15 years for assault and life imprisonment for murder.

“And the burning, which was so bad, I expected more than 15 years, but the law is the law, there is nothing that we can do,” Maugraigne Mokoena said.

He thanked the Diepkloof community for supporting the Mokoena family throughout the ordeal, as well as the police, the ANC Women’s League, and friends who had also been supportive.

Karabo’s father said Mantsoe had thought he would get away with murdering his daughter “but this time, the devil is a liar, he was caught and that is it”.

Maugraigne said he was not sure whether the Mokoena family had received the apology letter Mantsoe had claimed during his mitigation of sentence that he had sent to the family.

“Because during the funeral there was so much confusion […] we don’t know the person that he sent, he never called us, he never did anything,” Karabo’s father said.

Mantsoe claimed during his testimony before the sentence was handed down that he had asked his family members to deliver the apology letter and convey his condolences to the Mokoena family.

Maugraigne said accepting Montsoe’s apology – the convicted murderer had apologised for burning Karabo’s body – so soon after the judgment and sentencing would be difficult.

“This was bad because to bury a daughter I understand, but a burnt body of the daughter, I couldn’t even see her, it was bad, so apology I don’t think is an appropriate word, I wouldn’t take that,” Karabo’s father said.

His message to young men who abuse women was that the day they have daughters of their own who are abused, they would feel how painful the experience is.

ALSO READ: ‘Devil in disguise’ Sandile Mantsoe sentenced to 32 years for murder of Karabo

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