South Africa: Farmer bags life imprisonment for killing farmworker

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A Western Cape farmer‚ Martin Visser‚ was sentenced to life imprisonment on Wednesday for the murder of a farmworker‚ Adam Pieterse.

National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson Eric Ntabazalila said the farmer‚ from Lutzville‚ was also sentenced to three years for assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm and six months for assault.

Visser allegedly beat Pieterse with a spade‚ dragged him with a quadbike and then buried him in 2015.

Ntabazalila said there was an “incident” earlier on Wednesday in the cells before Judge Nathan Erasmus sentenced Visser.

It was reported that Visser tried to commit suicide by hanging himself with his jacket.

Ntabazalila said: “An incident took place in the cell and the accused was taken to hospital but he is back now. Defence objected with the sentencing taking place. State objected to that‚ saying the accused was assessed in hospital and tests of concussion were negative. After that sentencing started.”

Ntabazalila added: “Judge Erasmus told the court that an incident took place in the cell. He did not mention what incident it was.”

Visser murdered Pieterse in 2015.

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