Police management in Mpumalanga recently applauded members of the SAPS and the security personnel for securing a hefty sentence meted against serial rapist, 36-year-old Philip Mathonsi. The accused was sentenced to 30 years at Boschfontein Regional Court.
The court heard how the residents of Marlothpark near Komatipoort, more especially women lived in fear for a while as Mathonsi targeted them and reportedly robbed and raped them as well. These incidents were recorded between 2016 and 2017. Mathonsi would normally wait until it was dark before preying on his victims.
According to a police statement, on the 11th of September 2016, Mathonsi broke into a certain house in Marloth Park, attacked and raped a 63-year-old elderly woman and then fled. On the 04th of November 2016, he also attacked and raped another woman aged 60.
It is said that Mathonsi continued with his reign of terror when on the 22nd of December 2016, he broke into another house in the same area, attacked and raped another elderly woman who was also 60 then.
Again, on the 29th of January 2017, Mathonsi attacked a 59-year-old woman who was alone at the time as in the others, however fled the scene when security guards who were patrolling the area came to her rescue.
On 20 December 2019, his luck ran dry when he was apprehended by security guards who then notified police hence his sentencing as follows:
On the first rape count, he was sentenced to five years’ imprisonment,
Robbery – ten years,
Second rape – five years.
He was further sentenced to another ten years for the third rape and five years for robbery. Mathonsi was meted with an additional ten years for housebreaking as well as two years imprisonment for attempted rape.
The court has ordered that count 1 and 2 run concurrently whilst count 3 and 4 also run concurrently as well. The court further ordered that count 5, run concurrently with count 6 and 7. Mathonsi will spend 30 years effective behind bars. The accused’s particulars will also be entered into the National Register for Sex Offenders.
Major General Thulani Phahla, the Acting Provincial Commissioner of the South African Police Service in Mpumalanga, has welcomed the sentence.
“We applaud the team of Investigators, the security personnel, Prosecution as well as the Judiciary for ensuring that justice is served for the victims that suffered gross human violations in their homes. We hope that the sentence will serve as a deterrent to others,” said Phahla.