Release of Kruger and Du Toit indicates deterioration of criminal justice system

Issued by Janho Engelbrecht MP – DA Shadow Minister of Correctional Services
06 Jul 2023 in News
  • The release of Alison Botha’s attackers on parole without notifying her, indicates a deterioration in the criminal justice system and the Department of Correctional Services.
  • The parole decision was made without consulting Alison or considering objections from those who opposed parole.
  • The DA calls for an immediate review of the parole decision and proper consultation with Alison and her family.

Please find attached soundbites in English and Afrikaans by Janho Engelbrecht MP.

The DA is appalled that Alison Botha’s attackers were released on parole this week, without prior notice being afforded to her.

This indicates the deterioration of the criminal justice system and in particular the Department of Correctional Services, by failing to properly consult with Botha ahead of making its parole decision.

According to information at our disposal, the release also took place without any consultation with, or consideration of, those individuals who had objected to parole being granted.

Botha survived an attack in 1994 by Frans du Toit and Theuns Kruger, after they raped her and subsequently stabbed her 37 times. On the night of the attack, they were also on parole for a different rape prior to attacking Alison. This is a clear indication that these attackers are a danger to society. Their release from prison this week has placed the safety of both Alison and every other woman in South Africa at risk.

Upon sentencing, Judge Chris Jansen referred to the two men as ‘’inherently evil’’ and sentenced them to life in prison, with a recommendation they never be granted parole. Judge Jansen further indicated that had the death penalty have been an option, he would have given such a sentence based on the seriousness of their crimes.

According to information obtained by the DA in a Parliamentary Question to the Minister of Justice and Correctional Services, it is a requirement to consult with victims of offences specified in section 299A of the Criminal Procedure Act – one of which is rape. The failure to adequately and timeously inform Alison of her right to make representations prior to a decision to grant parole is simply unacceptable.

The fact that Correctional Services considered it acceptable to release these two dangerous attackers without consulting Alison, is indicative of the failure of South Africa’s parole system.

Recent examples of abuse of the parole system include the release of Thabo Bester on parole, whereafter he raped two women, and the release of Jacob Zuma on medical parole, which the Supreme Court of Appeal has ruled was unlawful.

It is clear that the Department and the Minister learned no lessons from the monumental debacle of the Bester escape, and continue operating with no consideration whatsoever for how their actions affect citizens.

The Department of Correctional Services must immediately review their parole decision, and properly consult with Alison and family members on the terms of this parole release.

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