A serial rapist from Cape Town was handed a life sentence plus 210 years’ imprisonment in the Western Cape High Court on Tuesday.
Thobile Dyonase from Nyanga was convicted of 23 charges, including six counts of rape, a count of sexual assault, eight counts of kidnapping and eight counts of robbery with aggravating circumstances.
The taxi driver’s reign of terror ran between August 12, 2017, and October 2, 2017, when he drove around the Table View and Parklands areas targeting women walking alone in the dark on their way to catch public transport for work, State prosecutor advocate Louise Freister told the court.
Dyonase’s modus operandi was to hoot to catch the woman’s attention and using his charm to draw them into his taxi, a Toyota Avanza.
He would tell his victims he had to take a different route to avoid traffic, then state they had climbed into the wrong taxi and demand their cellphones, money and bank cards and rape them in the vehicle.
One of the victims begged Dyonase not to rape her in front of her son, who was seated right beside her.
“He is a more dangerous type of offender in that his offences are carefully planned. His planning involves the seeking out the most vulnerable of the complainants.
“Once he violated the victims, he left them on the side of the road to fend for themselves,” Freister argued during aggravation and mitigation.
During sentencing, Judge Daniel Thulare said for justice to be served in this case, severe punishment was called for.
“Gender-based violence is serious and prevalent,” Thulare said.
All sentences are to run concurrently.
Before adjourning the matter, Thulare had one last thing to say: “Before I rise, the conscience of justice weighs heavily upon me to ask the chairperson of the portfolio committee on justice in the Parliament of the Republic of South Africa, the honourable Mr Bulelani Magwanishe: Is it not about time that persons in the category of the accused have their names entered in the national register for sex offenders?”