2 South Africans get 17 years term for killing Mozambican in Xenophobic violence

The two South African men who beat and stabbed a Mozambican man to death during a wave xenophobic violence in April last year were sentenced to 17 and 10 years in prison on Monday, local media reported.

Mthinta Bhengu and Sifundo Mzimela, who were caught on camera attacking Mozambican national Emmanuel Sithole in a township in the economic hub of Johannesburg, were found guilty of murder in November.

Bhengu, who has a previous conviction for violent crime, received the harsher sentence, 702 Talk Radio reported. Magistrate Van der Schyff said Bhengu continued to attack the Mozambican vendor even while the victim was begging for mercy, the radio said.

“It is not acceptable that a person should be killed in this manner,” said Van der Schyff.

The wave of anti-immigrant attacks first surfaced in the eastern KwaZulu Natal province in April before flaring up in Johannesburg.

At least seven people were killed, while hundreds of foreigners fled to safety camps as South Africa’s government sent in troops to quell the unrest.

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