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South Africa's 'unrepentant' baby thief jailed 10 years

South Africa's 'unrepentant' baby thief jailed 10 years

South Africa

A South African woman found guilty earlier this year of kidnapping a baby 19 years ago has been sentenced to 10 years in jail by a Johannesburg court.

She was found guilty on three charges of kidnapping, fraud and contravention of the children’s act. She was handed a combined jail term of fourteen years but the concurrent nature of the charges brought it down to 10 years.

In his ruling, Judge John Hlophe noted that the unrepentant posturing of the accused played a role in his sentencing. “One day when you have served your sentence, you will not be broken but that you will be rehabilitated,” he told the accused.

One day when you have served your sentence, you will not be broken but that you will be rehabilitated.

The accused in 1997 took Zephany Nurse, who was just three-day-old at the time, from the hospital and raised her up as her own child.

Years later, Zephany’s biological parents got wind of her existence when she started attending the same school as one of their other daughters and people noticed a similarity.

Local media reports that her biological father, Morne, was happy with the sentence but felt she should have got more time for the pain she had caused them.

Zephany still lives with the man who brought her up as a father but the biological family hopes they can form a relationship with their long lost daughter.