Most wanted criminal in North West: Serial rapist sentenced to 11 life terms plus 363 years

A serial rapist from the North West will be spending the rest of his life behind bars. File Picture: Independent Newspapers

A serial rapist from the North West will be spending the rest of his life behind bars. File Picture: Independent Newspapers

Published Feb 23, 2024


A serial rapist has been sentenced in the North West High Court sitting at Klerksdorp Regional Court to 11 life terms on rape charges plus 363 years for other serious charges.

Johannes Ontsheketse Tshabile, 43, was convicted on 65 charges which included rape, attempted murder, theft, robbery with aggravating circumstances, robbery, attempted robbery, assault, assault with intent to commit grievous bodily harm (GBH), attempt to commit a sexual offence, and sexual assault.

He also topped the list as one of the most wanted criminals in the province.

He perpetrated his crimes between December 2012 and May 2018.

The provincial spokesperson for the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), Henry Mamothame, said Tshabile accosted unsuspecting women on the streets and dragged them to nearby fields where he would threaten them with a knife, rob them of their belongings, and rape them before fleeing the scene.

The court heard in some instances he would strangle, stab his victims with a knife, and assault them with bricks and other objects before robbing and raping them.

In some instances, he also attacked couples where he would attack the men before robbing and raping their partners after they had fled the scene.

His victims included a 15-year-old girl and a 65-year-old woman.

The court further heard at times Tshabile had an unknown accomplice who also committed similar offences alongside him.

He was linked to the crimes through DNA. The North West police spokesperson, Colonel Adéle Myburgh, said Tshabile was arrested in 2019 following an intensive police investigation.

He was denied bail and remanded in custody.

“He also managed to escape from the Wolmaransstad police station, aided by a police officer. He was later rearrested and the police officer was dismissed from duty and criminally charged. The matter is still pending in court,” Myburgh said.

In aggravation of sentencing, Advocate Riekie Krause urged the court not to deviate from the prescribed minimum sentence of life imprisonment considering the emotional, physical, and psychological trauma the victims suffered.

Judge Tebogo Djadje agreed with the State and stated it was the responsibility of the court to protect society against such predators, especially if they have lived in fear for almost six years. She described Tshabile as remorseless and an individual who had no regard for women and children.