Another court may have ruled differently, says rapist Ninow's lawyer
The lawyer of convicted child rapist Nicholas Ninow argued on Friday that another court would have shown mercy to his client, who he insists is “a broken man” whose drug abuse had taken control of his life and actions.
Ninow’s application for leave to appeal his life sentence was heard before the North Gauteng High Court on Friday. He was convicted of raping a seven-year-old girl in a Dros restaurant in Silverton, Pretoria, in September 2018. He was also sentenced to five years for drug possession and defeating the ends of justice, with the sentences running concurrently.
While Ninow is applying to appeal both his sentence and conviction, the court can grant one or the other, or both.
On Friday morning, his lawyer, Herman Alberts, argued at length that another court could have ruled differently than the presiding judge in the trial.
Regarding Ninow’s conviction, Alberts argued the rape was not premeditated, claiming his client was high on drugs and alcohol.
“He was predisposed throughout his upbringing with drugs. He was addicted..”
Alberts argued that Ninow’s drug abuse was “normalised” throughout his upbringing and he had no chance to avoid it.
In response, state prosecutor Dora Ngobeni argued that the rape was a well-executed plan and that Ninow moved closer to the kiddies' area at the restaurant to prey on a child.
She asked that the court ignore any assertion that Ninow had acted impulsively.
Alberts argued that the sentence meted out to Ninow was inappropriate. “The fact that he showed immense remorse was a strong factor in his favour.”
Ngobeni countered that Alberts’ arguments on the conviction and sentence had already been dealt with by the court during trial, and there were few prospects of success in another court.
Judgment is expected next Tuesday March 10.