S’African woman who poisoned ‘abusive’ husband, kids, jailed 94 years

A Cape Town, South Africa, mother who poisoned her abusive husband and two children to death has been sentenced to 94 years in prison by the Harrismith High Court.

The convict, Mamphepi Alina Mokoena, 31, pleaded guilty to three counts of murder and a count of attempted murder preferred against her for poisoning her 49-year-old husband, Sofra Frans Pamplin, and two of their children, Mamsy Portia Mokoena, 14 and Meikie Mokoena, 10, on June 22.

One of the children, 11-year-old Lerato Aletta Mokoena, however, survived the poisoning.

In her plea agreement before Judge Pitso Molitsoane which was read by her defence lawyer, Mokoena said her marriage was volatile as she was abused by her husband.

Prosecutors told the court that on June 17, Mokoena went to town and bought poison known as Temik.

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“She said she told her sister, who was with her at the time, the poison was for rats at her home.

“On the morning of June 22, five days after purchasing the poison, Mokoena prepared breakfast for her family and poured a sachet of the poison into a pot of beans soup and served her three children the poisonous food before they left for school.

“Pamplin also took the poisoned soup to work as his lunch but did not get a chance to eat it, as her sister was present.

“During the day, Mokoena was called by teachers from the children’s schools informing her the children had been transported to the clinic after they fainted.

“While Portia and Meika died at the clinic, Lerato was assisted and admitted to the ICU section of the Pherong District Hospital where she recovered.

“Pamplin also got sick at work and was rushed to the Dihlabeng Regional Hospital. He died due to excessive intake of the poisoned soup,” state prosecutor, Dansi Mpemvane narrated and called for the court to impose a hefty term of direct imprisonment on the mother.

While delivering judgement, Judge Molitsoane sentenced Mokoena to 28 years imprisonment for each count of the three murders, and a further 10 years for the attempted murder of her daughter, Lerato.

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