28 March 2018

South Africa: Court Sentences Convicted Racist to Two Years in Prison

Cape Town — The Randburg Magistrate's court has sentenced former real estate agent Vicki Momberg to three years in prison, with one year suspended. Momberg was found guilty on four counts of crimen injuria for her filmed rant against a black police officer who assisted her after an alleged smash-and-grab incident. Momberg was heard criticising the "calibre of blacks" in Johannesburg during the viral video clip.

"The calibre of blacks in this town [varies] from the calibre of blacks in Durban. They're opinionated, they're arrogant, and they're just plain and simple useless. I am happy for a white person to assist me, or a coloured person, or an Indian person. I do not want a black person to assist me," she shouted.

Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa has welcomed the sentence when he tweeted:

We welcome the prison sentenced handed down today on Real Estate Agent #VickyMomberg who has been sentenced to 3 years in prison for her racist rant, of which 1 year is suspended. This will serve as a deterrent & a clear indication that there is no room for racism in South Africa.

The defence's Kevin Lawlor argued that Momber's sentence must be fair and balanced after prosecutor Yusuf Baba said: "It is my submission that a suitable sentence is direct imprisonment without the option of a fine". Lawlor added that Momberg was caught in an "emotional storm" due to the smash-and-grab incident and that she was not in a normal state of mind during the video clip.

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