A violent tragedy occurred in Walkerville, Johannesburg when a house robbery turned deadly. A group of men broke into a family’s home and raped and murdered the residents.
The family’s gardener, Patrick Petrus Radebe, 24; the family’s domestic servant’s son, Sipho Mbele, 21; and David Motaung, 20, pleaded guilty to murder, rape, and robbery on Tuesday, reported Sowetan Live.
The men broke into the home and shot 53-year-old Tony Viana dead. They then raped and killed his wife, Geraldine.
They then tied up and gagged the 12-year-old son, Amaro, and drowned him in a bath of boiling water. They drowned him “because he would be able to identify them.”
The family dog was also killed by having its stomach cut open.
Radebe and Mbele both pled guilty to three charges of murder and one charge of rape, each. Motaung pleaded guilty to robbery charges.
According to the Beeld newspaper, the men left the courtroom while laughing on their cell phones.
The men’s lawyer told the Vereeniging Regional Court that they had broken into the house to get revenge on their employer, 42-year-old Geraldine Viana, who they claim mistreated them.
The men told the court that Mr. Viana came home and was attacked with a golf club and a panga – a machete-like weapon – to force him to open the family’s safe.
When the wife and son arrived, all were tied up in separate rooms.
Mbele then raped Mrs. Viana while Radebe stood on her face to restrain her. Radebe raped her after Mbele was finished. They then shot her with her husband’s gun before shooting him in the head too, reported praag.org.
They admitted to the court that they thought Amaro would recognize them.
Their statement said: ‘We went to the bathroom and turned on the tap. We went to [Amaro] him and gagged him because he was crying. We forced him into the bath face down, knowing that he would drown.’
According to Beeld, Mbele and Radebe pleaded guilty to charges of burglary with the intent to steal, robbery with aggravating circumstances, the possession of an unlicensed firearm, the illegal possession of ammunition, and intentional damage to goods.
Forensic evidence confirmed that the boy was held down in boiling water. His hands and feet were also tied.
The men will be sentenced on September 6.