Johannesburg – Prosecutors have spoken of their bitter disappointment at the suicide of a serial child rape accused in Johannesburg.
Sifiso Makhubo, 42, hanged himself in his prison cell with a torn grey blanket, The Star reported. He was facing 122 charges of rape, kidnapping, robbery, murder and attempted murder.
The case was expected to set legal precedents because it was the first time in South Africa that a rapist who knew his HIV-positive status had been charged with attempted murder.
He infected several of his child victims with HIV.
“We had a duty to prove that he was well aware of his status and that he was well informed and knew how HIV is transmitted and, therefore, prove that he did it intentionally. He knew of his condition and he intentionally transmitted it to his victims,” said National Prosecuting Authority spokesperson Phindi Louw.
Investigating officer Detective Mokopu Maedi expressed his sadness about Makhubo’s suicide, saying: “This case took my life. My wife gave birth a month ago and I couldn’t take leave because I wanted to finish this.”
However, prosecutor Maro Papachristoforou described how many victims were thrilled when they heard the news that their tormentor had killed himself.
The matter has officially been struck off the roll.