Yesterday Magistrate Pravina Raghoonandan, in a potentially precedent setting judgment, sentenced Vicki Momberg to three years in prison of which one year will be suspended. Momberg was convicted of crimen injuria in 2017. Crimen injuria refers to a deliberate injury to another’s dignity by using racially offensive or obscene language or gestures.
Wits Justice Project and Just Detention International - South Africa host a workshop on reporting on torture and sexual abuse in prisons
Think back to the number of times you have heard the word ‘torture’ thrown around casually. A long wait in a queue at the licensing department, for instance, can be loosely described as torture. Sitting in a long and monotonous lecture can be described as torture. Examples like these generally evoke, at least, a mild sense of empathy that stems from their relatability. We can connect with these pains and overlook the hyperbole of describing them as torture. But what exactly is torture apart from a word we throw around almost always indiscriminately?
Prisoners serving life sentences in prisons around South Africa are protesting continued backlogs in parole considerations, with some embarking on hunger strikes.
Last month the Wits Justice Project (WJP) sat down with James A. Kirk, assistant professor of Social Work at New York University’s Silver School of Social Work, Marlon Peterson who hosts the podcast ‘Decarcerated’ and Calvin Moyo, a Zimbabwean graphic designer who spent two years in prison for a crime he did not commit.
Arguments heard in the Constitutional Court last week may result in the Constitutional invalidity of laws relating to the prosecution of sexual assault cases older than twenty years being confirmed. The case is the result of decades of legal proceedings by lawyers for the “Frankel 8” - individuals who were sexually assaulted as children by late Constitution Hill trustee, Sidney Frankel, with some cases dating as far back as 47 years. After Tuesday’s arguments, the Constitutional Court may soon lift the “procedural barrier” which previously made sexual assault cases older than 20 years unprosecutable.
This week, the Wits Justice Project sat down with James A. Kirk, assistant professor of Social Work at the NYU Silver School of Social Work and Marlon Peterson, who runs the podcast Decarcerated. These criminal justice activists are visiting South Africa to speak at The Global Prison Conference at the University of Johannesburg on Friday.
WJP collaborated with Global Citizen Impact to produce multimedia piece on Victor Nkomo's story along with other prisoners in remand detention around the world.
Six prisoners from Kutama Sinthumule, a privately-run prison in Limpopo, have escaped following a work-stoppage by warders resulting in a spate of violence by prisoners which started last night.
The Hawks are investigating three men involved in Ahmed Timol’s death – what does this mean for the suspects?
The Hawks have opened a docket in order to charge former Security Branch members Joao Rodrigues, Neville Els and Seth Sons, all implicated in Ahmed Timol’s 1971 death, with murder, death accessory to murder and perjury. Earlier this year, all three testified at the re-opened inquest into the cause of Timol’s death in detention at John Vorster Square (now Johannesburg Central Police Station).