A South African mother was put through a ‘living nightmare’ by a rapist who held a gun to her children’s head to force her into sex.
Nicky, 45, was raped in front of her children by 32-year-old Sebenzile Simane – who also sexually molested his victim’s daughter after shooting his way into the farm house.
Simane, who also tied the family up and stole their money, was handed two life sentences and a total of 173 years in prison after he was found guilty of the string of violent crimes in South Africa’s Eastern Cape.
Nicky and her husband Heine, a 44-year-old farmer, who are choosing to tell their story, have been forced out of their farm house and say that farmers in the country face an ongoing threat of violence.
Nicky, second from right, pictured with her husband Heine (second from left) and her three children, was the victim of a horrific ordeal at her farm house in South Africa’s Eastern Cape
Describing her ordeal, Nicky revealed how:
- Her attacker shot her in the bottom as she shielded her children from his bullets
- Simane threatened to ‘shoot off’ her 15-year-old son’s feet unless he raped his mother
- The gunman laid Nicky’s daughter down beside her and undressed her and tried to rape her
- He only agreed not to rape the 13-year-old girl if she watched him rape her mother instead.
- Simane raped the mother twice and only spared her a third rape as she had lost too much blood to have sex.
The white-washed £1.3million farmhouse – set in nearly 1,000 acres of land – had belonged to the family for a century and Nicky’s two sons, aged nine and 15, and her 13-year-old daughter had been brought up there.
But Simane apparently felt he had been wronged by Nicky’s farmer husband and came seeking deadly revenge on the family.
The family home was so remote that their nearest neighbour was a mile away and did not hear the gunshots at the home.
After surviving the horrific ordeal the family is now planning to move to Australia to set up a new farm there.
Campaign group AfriForum says that Afrikaner and European farmers are under daily attack in the country.
Sebenzile Simane, pictured has been given two life sentences for the string of violent crimes in March last year
Describing what happened on March 23, 2018, Nicky said a stream of bullets came blasting through the patio door, narrowly missing her 15-year-old son’s head.
Nicky said: ‘With the bullets smashing through the windows I can only describe our feeling as being hunted like wild animals.
He shot his way through a sliding patio door to get in. ‘What followed I can only describe as four hours of pure hell – just sick torture and depravity,’ Nicky said.
‘He held the gun to my nine-year-old son’s head and threatened to shoot him unless I complied.
‘I told my little one to be quiet or else this man would kill us. All I saw were his silent tears rolling down his little cheeks for the next four hours. The sight of that will be with me forever.
‘He tied us all up with fencing wire so tight that our hands lost their circulation and turned grey.
‘He shouted at my children that he was there to kill their father and that he would chop him up in front of them. He said that when he came through the door they would watch him butchered.
‘He then repeatedly threatened to shoot my eldest son’s feet off if he didn’t obey him and then ordered him to rape me. I had never heard such a sick thing before and was totally mortified.
‘All I could do was beg him not to make my son do that. He just kept pointing the gun at my son’s feet and saying he would shoot them unless he raped his mum in front of his brother and sister.
The white-washed £1.3million farmhouse (pictured) – set in nearly 1,000 acres of land – had belonged to the family for a century
‘I begged and pleaded with him not to do this and to take me to another room and take me instead.’
Explaining what happened next, she said: ‘He grabbed me and forced me to my bedroom and raped me there. There was blood everywhere as I had already been badly shot. I could do nothing as my hands were tied behind my back.
‘He then brought my 13-year-old daughter to the bedroom, undressed her and attempted to rape her. He was sexually molesting her and all I could do was beg for mercy and to take me again.
‘So instead of raping her he forced my beautiful innocent daughter to watch as he raped me again.
‘I cannot describe the anger this man displayed toward us and I knew as he raped me that if my children had any chance of survival I had to get this man away from them and the farm house.
‘You don’t care about yourself – you just don’t want your children to die and you do all you can.’
Describing how she finally shook the man off, she said: ‘He had tried to start our car outside but couldn’t get it going so in a bid to buy my family time I told him to take my bank cards and pin numbers and to let me drive him to town to the ATM.
‘He tied up my children even tighter even though their hands were already grey from no circulation.
Bullet holes are seen in a door at the family home, showing how rapist Sebenzile Simane shot his way into the property
‘I drove into town and got him my maximum 4,000 rand [£225] which was just before midnight so he told me to drive to a quiet spot until after midnight when the ATM would allow him to use the card again.
‘He undid my seat belt and told me to recline the seat so he could rape me again but I was so weak from the loss of blood I told him that if he raped again I would almost certainly bleed to death.
‘I told him it was 12.04am and that the ATM would give him another 4,000 rand and to please just take my cards and take his money and let me drive to hospital where I could get help.
‘Once he was out of our VW transporter I hit the accelerator and drove back to the farm and found the children had freed themselves and called a neighbour and that help had reached them.
‘I hugged my brave and petrified children but despite what had happened to us all and the emotional and physical torture he had put us through we were all alive and that was the important thing,
‘For us as parents the saddest part of this is that we can never give our children their innocence back. That creature took it. The children and I will never be able to live on that farm again.’
The mother and her children now live in the city, where their husband visits them at weekends.
Simane, pictured, threatened to shoot his victim’s nine-year-old son dead if she did not comply
He is living there alone until the property is sold and keeps a loaded shotgun at his side.
Nicky said: ‘My family and I had no choice in what happened to us that night, we do however have the choice not to let it define us, we choose to live and will be eternally grateful to have survived that night.
‘It could have been so different and we have our demons but are just trying to rebuild but we will not let that creature destroy us and it will take time but we will move on and lead good lives.
‘Lastly, I would appeal to each and every South African to remember the words of Nelson Mandela: ‘We can change the world and make it a better place. It is in your hands to make a difference’.
AfriForum said that so far this year 22 farmers have been murdered and 195 farms have been attacked and over recent years between 55 and 75 farmers are brutally killed each year.
Many of the attacks involve horrific torture including farmers being burned with hot irons, boiling water poured over their head and body, the use of power tools and gang rape before murder.
The remoteness of the family home is seen in this image – the family’s nearest neighbour was a mile away and did not hear the gunshots at the home
The South African government insists the chief motive is robbery and that it is not a specific attack on whites or farmers but that they are vulnerable and easy targets due to their remoteness.
AfriForum spokesman Ian Cameron said: ‘In Nicky’s case she was lucky as were her children to have survived the farm attack but will have to live with the lasting trauma after a four-hour ordeal and the psychological torture.
‘Imagine the fear of knowing that your three children are constantly in danger and are made to watch as you are repeatedly raped after having already been shot and bleeding heavily.’
Judge Olav Ronaasen, passing sentence at the Eastern Cape High Court in Port Elizabeth branded Simane, 32, as ‘cruel and barbaric’ and a ‘predator who targeted a woman and her children’.
He was given two life sentences plus 137 years after being found guilty of 17 offences including two of rape, 4 of attempted murder, attempted rape and compelling a child to watch a sex act.
Eastern Cape Police Commissoner Liziwe Ntshinga said: ‘Dedication and a thorough investigation contributed to making sure this heartless criminal was removed from society for a very long time.
‘This case must serve as a strong deterrent to perpetrators of such crimes as the South African Police regards the safety and security of the farming community as a priority.’