Does Botha family get Justice for murdered parents?

Elderly Benoni residents Jacobus Paulus Botha and Alice Botha, both 75, suffered severe brain damage in a very vicious attack at their Ninth Avenue, Benoni home on 12 February 2010. Mr Botha lingered in hospital with severe brain damage until he died in June 2010. She was strangled, raped and her head was caved in.  

  BOTHA parents Benoni murder Feb 2010A

Accused murder suspect allowed very close to distressed family in court-room:

Mrs Alice Botha, above right, died on the scene. The family are upset because the wrong date of February 13 2010 was put on her death certificate: however she died on February 12:  when her daughter Antoinette Jannecke arrived home after seeing a movie with her friend Jose Vieira that Friday-night at 11pm, the young couple had come across a black man who casually strolled  from a room of the murder-scene-house. Mr Vieira (picture below) had briefly grappled with this man in the garden to try and retain him – but let him go when he heard Antoinette scream inside: she had found her mother murdered inside and her father critically injured with severe brain-damage. The police-forensic team arrived hours later and entered the wrong time of death on the certificate. The family points out that this is just one error in a a ‘bungled police investigation’:P   This week a third-suspect also was released by the Delmas court because ‘police investigators were unable to provide proof of his involvement’.

The other two remaining suspects also were allowed to move around in the court-room in very close proximity of the distressed family-members – including the daughter Antoinette who had discovered her assaulted parents that night.  When the Botha family complained to court officials that the black males suspects were allowed to be uncomfortably close to them, the explanation was proffered that ‘Delmas court was a very old building’. The case was postponed to April 16 2010 because the judge assigned to reside over the case, didn’t bother to show up.


Mrs Botha, 75, was found to be raped, she had severe strangulation marks, and had suffered horrific head-injuries. She was bludgeoned to death. Her husband Jack, also 75, succumbed from severe brain injuries in hospital June 2010. Vieira told Beeld newspaper at the time that  when they arrived at 11pm the garage door was open and there was blood on the door knob. “It was all so very strange. Antoinette was first into the house and found her father injured on the floor of the kitchen. A strange man then came walking from one of the rooms and strolled through the kitchen and exited the back door – acting ‘as if he had the fullest right to be inside’ he said.  Vieira grabbed the guy outside and briefly grappled with him in the dark backyard in an attempt to arrest him – but then Vieira got distracted by Antoinette – “who started screaming hysterically’ he said. “I then realised that she was alone in the house. I ran inside and the man got away.’ He said the man had not put up any defence. When he joined his deeply traumatised friend he saw the bludgeoned body of his friend’s mother in the hallway.  The father was severely brain-damaged and rushed to hospital. Botha Alice 75 bludgeoned to death husband Jack serious Feb142010 neighbour Jose Vieira discovered couple

Residing Judge could not bother to show up for the scheduled trial:

The trial of three black male suspects was supposed to start at Delmas court from October 10 2011. Five days had been set aside for it: however, the judge did not bother to show up. The case had to be postponed to April 16 2012. And one of the three suspects was released from custody: the police investigation produced  ‘insufficient evidence’. The family said they were very unhappy about the ‘bungled police-investigation’.  The Botha family has granted us permission to tell the story.

Ridiculous trial postponement reason:

The couple’s daughter Alice Botha-Muller writes from Delmas Court: October 10 2011 – “Today was supposed to be the start of the double murder trial of the three black male suspects who allegedly attacked my parents Jacobus Paulus Botha (Jack) and Alice Botha on the evening of 12 February 2010 in their Benoni home. However, the trial was postponed to April 16 2012 because there was no ‘residing judge’ available. There was a judge, a Mrs Karelse, on hand just to postpone the trial to 16 April 2012 and to also declare that the third suspect was released because ‘there was no evidence of his involvement’.

Mrs Botha-Muller writes: “The reason for the postponement was ridiculous: all the witnesses, the attorneys, the state prosecutors were on hand, and there was a judge, identified as a Mrs Karelse: but she was not the ‘residing judge’ . So the case was postponed again. Mrs Karelse was merely there to postpone the case to next year, and to declare that the third suspect was free to go. ”

Inaccurate death certificate for Alice Botha: poor police investigation:

The family of the murdered Afrikaner couple also question inaccurate death-certificate date submitted in the court documents for their mother Alice.  They also complain about the ‘poor police investigation’ and will raise this with the authorities, Mrs Botha-Muller wrote me.

The family was very unhappy about the fact that one of the suspects who had  actually been found in her sister’s house after the attack by the police,  ‘was allowed to walk very closely to the family in his shackles in the court room.’ This upset them very much, she wrote. “We complained to the public prosecutor about the fact that the suspects are allowed to move to such close vicinity to the family, but she offered as explanation that Delmas had  ‘an old court room’ .

Alice Botha-Muller:


About Adriana Stuijt
Retired South African-Dutch journalist formerly Sunday Times Johannesburg

3 Responses to Does Botha family get Justice for murdered parents?

  1. alice muller says:

    as case unfolds, it comes to light that the police has done a great job with what they had. And just to correctify, -the coroner arrived after twelve which infact is then the 13th, so to say “hours later” sounds bad. But yes, she died on 12th not 13th. The prosecutor for the state is also excellent! The case is still going . The judge has also been very fair on all accounts so far, allowing suspects enough time to defend themselves etc. I feel that my previous feelings about police not doing great job at investigating are changing, and they are doing the best they can.

    • We are relieved to read that the Botha case is unfolding more fairly than the family had originally supposed. We wish the family all the strength to go through this ordeal, which is always very painful. Thank you for writing, Mrs Muller.

  2. alice muller says:

    justice has prevailed and the accused David Kgoatla(47) and Stephen Seipeng(52) were both sentenced to 3 life sentences each , plus an extra 15 each. the judge was very clear when he said that they showed no remorse for their actions, and whilst they both had previous convictions from the 80’s, (both in excess of 15) he said they haven’t learned their lesson, and should be kept from the society. he also said while everybody in this rainbow nation tries their best to keep harmony, these two are trying to blame their poor past for their actions. their actions and what they have done in this case has no bearing on their past, as there is so many people in this country who is poor, but will not resolve to violence and murder. the family can honestly say that we have renewed confidence in the justice system. thanks to all police, prosecutor and judge.

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