Call for life sentence for student’s killers
THE STATE wants the two killers of Jaishika Amtha, a University of the Witwatersrand postgraduate student, to be jailed for life.
Alexis Marais, 34, and Sharon du Preez, 50, a lesbian couple, murdered Amtha, 23, in her Lenasia home on March 17, 2016. She was shot twice in the head.
Several items, including her father’s firearm used to shoot her, were stolen.
Marais and Du Preez, who were arrested in Alberton more than a month later, have been found guilty of murder, robbery and illegal possession of a firearm and ammunition.
Judge Cornelius van der Westhuizen heard pre-sentencing arguments in the Johannesburg High Court on Wednesday.
Prosecutor David Mothibe called on the court to hand the pair a life sentence for murder, 15 years for robbery and three years for the illegal possession of a firearm and ammunition.
“The court should impose a severe sentence, a sentence that would send a message that these types of offences are punished,” Mothibe said.
Amtha was studying for her Master’s degree in pharmacy at Wits.
“The country was robbed of a young woman, who would have played a role in society,” Mothibe said.
Amtha’s parents, in a victim impact report read out in court, said they hoped for the harshest possible sentence.
The killers’ lawyers said their clients were ideal candidates for lenient sentences – they were first-time offenders, intoxicated at the time and the murder could not be proved to be premeditated.
Sentencing is expected next month.