A South African mother who was put through a ‘living nightmare’ by a rapist who held a gun to her children’s head to force her into sex has pleaded for help after her family were denied asylum in Australia.
Nicky, 45, was raped in front of her children by 32-year-old Sebenzile Simane – who also sexually molested her daughter after shooting his way into the Eastern Cape farm house.
After surviving the horrific ordeal, Nicky and her family were planning to move to Australia to set up a farm – but their humanitarian visas were rejected.
The mother-of-three said her family began dreaming of a new life when Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton said he was considering a special refugee intake for South Africans who had been persecuted.
She said those dreams have now been destroyed.
‘It was a glimmer of hope, but it’s concerning that nothing has ever come of it,’ she told The Australian.
‘I speak for thousands of South African farmers: we need a lifeline. The violence here is escalating.’
Nicky, second from right, pictured with her husband Heine (second from left) and her three children, was the victim of a horrific ordeal at her farm house in South Africa’s Eastern Cape
Nicky and her husband Heine, 44, have been forced out of their farm house. Their three children aged 10, 14 and 16, have been too terrified to return.
Campaign group AfriForum said Afrikaner and European farmers were under daily attack in the country.
About 22 farmers had been murdered in South Africa this year and 195 farms have been attacked.
In recent years, between 55 and 75 farmers are brutally killed annually.
Sebenzile Simane, pictured has been given two life sentences for the string of violent crimes in March last year
Many of the attacks involve horrific torture, including farmers being burned with hot irons, boiling water poured over their head and body, the use of power tools and gang rape before murder.
The South African government insists the chief motive was robbery and that it was not a specific attack on whites or farmers but that they are vulnerable and easy targets due to their remoteness.
Mr Dutton had claimed white South Africans needed ‘special attention’ and asked his department to ‘accept and consider’ applications from South Africa in July last year.
This came after a controversial push from Liberal MPs for an intake of up to 10,000 persecuted South Africans.
‘If people are being persecuted — regardless of whether it’s because of religion or the colour of their skin or whatever — we need to provide assistance where we can,’ he told 2GB radio in March last year.
‘People make the point on occasion that we’re too generous, but in this circumstance we do have to look at the persecution that’s taking place. We have a huge South African expat community within Australia. They work hard, they integrate well into Australian society, they contribute and make us a better country and they’re the sorts of migrants that we want to bring into our country.’
AfriForum spokesman Ian Cameron said Nicky and her children were lucky to be alive but will have to live with the lasting trauma after a four-hour ordeal and the psychological torture.
Simane, who also tied the family up and stole their money, has been sentenced to two life sentences and 173 years in prison after he was found guilty of the string of violent crimes.
He had apparently felt he had been wronged by Nicky’s farmer husband and burst into the family home seeking revenge.
The white-washed £1.3million farmhouse (pictured) – set in nearly 1,000 acres of land – had belonged to the family for a century
On March 23, 2018, a stream of bullets came blasting through the patio door, narrowly missing the head of the couple’s son.
Describing her ordeal, Nicky revealed how:
- Her attacker shot her in the bottom as she shielded her children from his bullets
- Simane threatened to ‘shoot off’ her 15-year-old son’s feet unless he raped his mother
- The gunman laid Nicky’s daughter down beside her and undressed her and tried to rape her
- He only agreed not to rape the 13-year-old girl if she watched him rape her mother instead.
- Simane raped the mother twice and only spared her a third rape as she had lost too much blood to have sex.
The family home was so remote that their nearest neighbour was a mile away and did not hear the gunshots.
Nicky said she felt as though they were being hunted like wild animals.
‘What followed I can only describe as four hours of pure hell – just sick torture and depravity.’
He held the gun to her youngest son’s head and threatened to shoot him unless she complied.
Silent tears rolled down his cheeks for the next four hours.
‘He tied us all up with fencing wire so tight that our hands lost their circulation and turned grey,’ she said.
‘He shouted at my children that he was there to kill their father and that he would chop him up in front of them. He said that when he came through the door they would watch him butchered.
‘He then repeatedly threatened to shoot my eldest son’s feet off if he didn’t obey him and then ordered him to rape me. I had never heard such a sick thing before and was totally mortified.
Bullet holes are seen in a door at the family home, showing how rapist Sebenzile Simane shot his way into the property
‘All I could do was beg him not to make my son do that. He just kept pointing the gun at my son’s feet and saying he would shoot them unless he raped his mum in front of his brother and sister.’
Nicky begged and pleaded with him before he grabbed her and forced her to the bedroom where she was raped.
‘There was blood everywhere as I had already been badly shot. I could do nothing as my hands were tied behind my back.
‘He then brought my 13-year-old daughter to the bedroom, undressed her and attempted to rape her. He was sexually molesting her and all I could do was beg for mercy and to take me again.
‘So instead of raping her he forced my beautiful innocent daughter to watch as he raped me again.’
Simane, pictured, threatened to shoot his victim’s nine-year-old son dead if she did not comply
He then tried to start the car outside but couldn’t get it going so in a bid to buy her family time, she told him to take her bank cards and pin numbers and to let her drive him to town to the ATM.
Just before midnight she drove into town and got him 4,000 rand (AUD$411). He then told her to drive to a quiet spot until after midnight when the ATM would allow him to use the card again.
‘He undid my seat belt and told me to recline the seat so he could rape me again but I was so weak from the loss of blood I told him that if he raped again I would almost certainly bleed to death.
‘I told him it was 12.04am and that the ATM would give him another 4,000 rand and to please just take my cards and take his money and let me drive to hospital where I could get help.’
The remoteness of the family home is seen in this image – the family’s nearest neighbour was a mile away and did not hear the gunshots at the home
Once he was out of the car she hit the accelerator and drove back to the farm and found the children had freed themselves and called a neighbour and that help had reached them.
She said the saddest part of the ordeal was that they can never give their children their innocence back.
‘That creature took it. The children and I will never be able to live on that farm again.’
The mother and her children now live in the city, where their husband visits them at weekends.
He is living there alone until the property is sold and keeps a loaded shotgun at his side.
‘Lastly, I would appeal to each and every South African to remember the words of Nelson Mandela: ‘We can change the world and make it a better place. It is in your hands to make a difference’.
Judge Olav Ronaasen, passing sentence at the Eastern Cape High Court in Port Elizabeth branded Simane, 32, as ‘cruel and barbaric’ and a ‘predator who targeted a woman and her children’.
He was given two life sentences plus 137 years after being found guilty of 17 offences including two of rape, 4 of attempted murder, attempted rape and compelling a child to watch a sex act.
Eastern Cape Police Commissoner Liziwe Ntshinga said: ‘Dedication and a thorough investigation contributed to making sure this heartless criminal was removed from society for a very long time.
‘This case must serve as a strong deterrent to perpetrators of such crimes as the South African Police regards the safety and security of the farming community as a priority.’
Daily Mail Australia has contacted the Department of Home Affairs for comment.