Courts convict 1,357 abusers of women and children over six months in 2018
A total of 1,357 people accused of committing crimes against women and children were convicted between July 1 and December 31 2018, the police said on Wednesday.
Col Brenda Muridili said a total of 371 life sentences were meted out by the courts and over 4,629 years of imprisonment were issued for the 838 cases.
Among those arrested were six serial rapists who were convicted to a combined 17 life sentences and an additional 800 years behind bars.
One suspect convicted of 52 counts of rape, kidnapping and assault was imprisoned to 15 life sentences and 105 years behind bars.
Hailing the police officers' efforts, Muridili said: "The family violence, child protection and sexual offences (FCS) investigations units around the country consist of dedicated members who go beyond the call of duty to ensure that the survivors of these heinous crimes – rape, murder and child pornography – are treated with the utmost care and respect to avoid secondary victimisation."
Some of the cases against serial rapists that made headlines in 2018 include that of taxi driver Lebogang Gift Mokoena.
He was said to be behind the abduction, rape and robbing of female taxi commuters in Gauteng.
Mokoena was sentenced to 13 life sentences and 340 years in prison.
Another serial rapist who made headlines last year was Amos Ngobeni who terrorised the community of Inanda in KwaZulu-Natal.
Ngobeni, a Zimbabwean national, stalked the streets of Inanda and raped 19 women over several years. The 30-year-old artisan and father of four will now spend the foreseeable future behind bars.
In November, the mother of a three-year-old - "identified as Baby Jamie" or "Baby X" - was sentenced to 20 years in prison for the child's repeated abuse that ultimately led to the little girl's death.
The woman and her mother - Baby Jamie’s granny - were arrested in November 2014 for the gruesome assault and torture of the little girl in their Chatsworth home.
During the trial, Dr Sibusiso Ntsele, a specialist forensic pathologist who conducted the post-mortem on Baby Jamie, told the court that the cause of the child's death was blunt force trauma to the head.
The child's 51-year-old grandmother died at the Westville prison earlier in the year.
Another case of child abuse was that of the toddler who became known as "Baby Daniel".
The case was heard in the Johannesburg high court last year where the court found that his mother caused his child's death by remaining silent about the abuse the child was suffering at the hands of her boyfriend.
The couple was accused of beating the three-year-old and burning him with boiling water, ultimately leading to his death in June 2016.
They are yet to be sentenced.