In the first conviction of its kind in SA, a woman has been sentenced to 15 years behind bars for the rape of a disabled teenage boy.
The 45-year-old woman from Port Elizabeth raped the 13-year-old mentally disabled and physically handicapped teenager in Motherwell in 2009 .
She will now be listed in the National Sex Offenders Register. She cannot be named because of a successful application she brought after being sentenced in the Eastern Cape High Court in Port Elizabeth on Tuesday preventing her name from being published. The boy cannot be named either.
Port Elizabeth National Prosecuting Authority spokesman Tsepo Ndwalaza said: “It is the first conviction of its kind. She is the first woman to be successfully convicted of rape in South Africa.”
She was prosecuted under the Sexual Offences and Related Matters Amendment Act of 2007, which has an expanded statutory offence of rape, applicable to all forms of sexual penetration without consent, irrespective of gender.
The woman was previously convicted on a charge of sexual assault before the new act came into effect.
“The incident happened in 2009 when the lady, the perpetrator was a caregiver to the boy,” Ndwalaza said.
This act also addresses the archaic common law on sexual offences that existed previously. Among other critical things, it repeals the common law offence of rape and replaces it with an expanded definition. It simply means that a woman, a man or a child can now be raped by another woman or man.
Another development with the act is the enactment of new, expanded or amended sexual offences against children and people who are mentally disabled, including offences relating to sexual exploitation or grooming, exposure to or display of child pornography and the creation of child pornography.