Nine attackers threatened to rape a Gauteng farmer’s children if he refused to cooperate and give them what they wanted. The farmer has 4 children, aged between 6 and 18. Paul da Cruz and his wife and four children were attacked on their Westonaria farm in Gauteng on Friday morning. Da Cruz has stated that the attackers directly threatened his children with rape and added that he wanted his family to get into counselling as soon as possible to deal with the trauma of the attack. Several firearms and laptops were stolen during the attack. Warrant Officer Peter Masooa, the police spokesperson, confirmed the incident.
Police minister Bheki Cele sparked outrage when he recently termed farm murders as “not a priority crime”. Cele argued that farm attacks usually refer to incidents classified as aggravated robbery on a farm dwelling. “The most serious of these crimes are grouped into a category and is referred to as contact crimes and include murder, attempted murder, sexual offences, assault with the intent of causing grievous bodily harm, common assault and aggravated robbery.”
Meanwhile, the brutality of the attacks have become more and more inhumane and the agricultural sector is under strain to force the government to act against these brutal attacks. Recently, two suspects were arrested for the brutal murder of Brendin Horner, a young Free State farmer. He was found dead in an open space in Paul Roux around 06:30 on Friday morning, tied to a pole with a rope around his neck and serious injuries to his face and head. A knife was found near the scene. The two suspects, aged 32 and 43, will appear in the Senekal Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday.
In another case, three men appeared in the Delmas Magistrate’s Court in connection with the murder of Chantel Kershaw, a local 44-year-old farmer. Chantel was strangled to death before they went inside the house, where they assaulted her mother and locked a female employee in the bathroom. They stole several belongings and fled the scene in the family’s Chevrolet bakkie.