Man Sentenced to Life and 10 Years for Murder and Rape, Estcourt Regional Court


The Estcourt Regional Court sentenced Ndoda Mbatha (40) to life and 10 years imprisonment for the murder and rape of a 26-year-old woman in the Vumbu area of Estcourt in September 2018.

On 01 September 2018, the deceased and her friend went out for drinks. While they were out, they met Mbatha (who was unknown to them both), and the deceased started talking to him. She left with him and at some stage, her friend phoned her telling her that she (the friend) wanted to go to another place. The deceased advised that she would meet her friend at their agreed location. The deceased’s phone was switched off when her friend tried to call her again.

The following day community members in the area alerted police to the deceased’s body which was found in some bushes. Her clothes, shoes and a used condom were found nearby. Since Mbatha had fled the area after committing the offence (and was unknown to the deceased’s friend) he could not be identified, and the evidence found at the scene was sent to the local criminal record centre (LCRC) for analysis.

In May 2022 Mbatha was arrested for another offence and the buccal swabs taken from him upon arrest, linked him to the rape and murder of the deceased.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        

In court, prosecutor Nokubonga Buthelezi led the evidence of the deceased’s friend, the SAPS members who visited the murder crime scene as well as members from the LCRC who linked Mbatha. The evidence of the doctor who performed a postmortem on the deceased also formed part of the state’s case. The doctor advised the court that the deceased’s cause of death was strangulation and that a gynecological examination revealed injuries inside her genital organs. In aggravation of sentence, Buthelezi led the testimony of the deceased’s sister who told the court that the deceased had left behind two small children, one being a baby. The woman told the court that her sister (the deceased) had been employed and took care of them.

Mbatha was sentenced to life imprisonment for murder and 10 years imprisonment for rape. The court ordered that the sentences run concurrently resulting in an effective sentence of life imprisonment. Further, Mbatha was declared unfit to possess a firearm.

The NPA welcomes this successful prosecution and we commend the work done by the Prosecution and Police. We hope that sentences of this nature will have the necessary deterrent effect.


Kind regards,


Natasha Ramkisson-Kara

NPA Regional Spokesperson

KZN Division

Enquiries: / 0716700229

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