Home South African Life behind bars for #WinnieRust killers

Life behind bars for #WinnieRust killers


Judge says crime was senseless, barbaric and brutal.

Nigel Plaatjies, 19, and his uncle Johannes Plaatjies were sentenced in the Western Cape High Court on Wednesday. Picture: Cindy Waxa/African News Agency

Cape Town – Nigel Plaatjies and his uncle Johannes Plaatjies have been sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder of Wellington author, Winnie Rust.

The two got an additional 32 years and 30 years for robbery with aggravating circumstances, theft, arson and fraud convictions. 

Western Cape High Court Judge Elize Steyn said the Rust was vulnerable and elderly.

“The crime was senseless, barbaric and brutal,” she said.

She said Rust died in the hands of the person whose life she was trying to better.

Steyn said Nigel had admitted to planning the robbery with Johannes. She said he was in a position of trust. 

Murdered author Winnie Rust. Picture: Naomi Bruwer

Steyn said the motive must have changed when Rust saw them. She said Rust must have told them that she would report them and that could’ve motivated them to kill her.

“There is no place for such criminality in society. There is a country wide outcry about murder and other violent crimes which have shown a scourge,” Steyn said.

Steyn disputed Nigel’s allegations of being influenced by his uncle.

“Nigel was in a position of trust. He was like family to the deceased. He knew the house well. On the day of the murder he was the one who called Johannes the most. He was the one who withdrew the maximum amount on her bank account using her card. He was relaxed when going on a shopping spree,” she said.


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Cape Argus