Mlotshwa shocked by parole release of attackers

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Coffin assault victim Victor Mlotshwa expressed shock and dismay following the released on parole of Willem Oosthuizen and Theo Jackson.

Oosthuizen and Jackson were set free at the weekend as part of the thousands of qualifying low-risk offenders released on parole to help curb the spread of COVID-19 across correctional facilities.

The duo was initially sentenced to 11 and 14 years respectively for forcing Mlotshwa into a coffin and threatening to pour petrol on him in Middelburg, Mpumalanga in 2016.

However, their sentences were later reduced on appeal to five years.

Mlotshwa says that the emotional scars from the ordeal will remain with him for a long time.

“It is a terrible feeling. I am still grieving from this whole thing and now we have this parole. We just learned yesterday that these guys have been released and I do not trust them because we know the kind of people out there. It is very difficult for me to trust them.”

The video below is of the coffin case victim begging for his life:

In the video below, Lamola elaborates on government’s decision to release petty crime offenders:

Almost 19 000 prisoners to be released on parole

In May Minister of Correctional Services, Ronald Lamola, announced that almost 19 000 prisoners would be released on parole to combat the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic from the already overcrowded correctional facilities in the country.

President Cyril Ramaphosa has authorised the placement on parole of inmates convicted for petty crimes, in response to the United Nations’ (UN) call for countries to reduce their prison populations.

Currently, the country’s correctional facilities are overcrowded with a population of 155 000 inmates.

The President warned that these offenders may be arrested if they violate their release conditions. He said the dispensation excludes prisoners sentenced to life imprisonment or for those serving terms for including sexual offences, murder and attempted  murder as well as gender-based violence and child abuse.

Lamola confirmed that convicted murderers Oscar Pistorius and Janusz Waluś will not qualify due to the nature of the crimes they have been convicted for.