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Slain model’s diary shows long-term abuse

Zanele Khumalo’s boyfriend Thato Kutumela was sentenced to 20 years behind bars.

A photograph of Zanele Khumalo is emblazoned on her mother’s t-shirt which she wore while hearing her daughter’s rapist and murderer’s fate at the High Court in Johannesburg, 28 March 2014. Picture: Vumani Mkhize/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Slain model Zanele Khumalo's diary contained stories about her abusive relationship with her boyfriend, her father said on Monday.

Last week, Thato Kutumela was sentenced to 20 years behind bars by the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria.

He was found guilty of strangling and raping the pregnant 18-year-old in Pretoria back in 2011.

According to Khumalo's father, the diary entry containing details of abuse was made just a month before she was killed.

Video: Kutumela hears his fate.

Khumalo's father Themba initially welcomed the sentence but now says the punishment should have been harsher.

He said the handwritten diary showed that her relationship with Kutumela had been abusive for some time before she was killed.

"This is what we found in her diary," he says slowly, quoting a line from its pages: "Today is the last day any man abuses me. I have bruises on my body and the smile on your face shows you are sick."

Zanele's father speaks to the media after the sentencing, 28 March 2014. Picture: Vumani Mkhize/EWN.

Themba says because Kutumela showed no remorse, it was difficult for his family to forgive him.

He says the judge didn't consider that Khumalo had an unborn child.

The farther believes Kutumela will appeal the ruling.

The case was heard in the same courthouse as Oscar Pistorius's murder trial, with parallels being drawn between the two matters.

The Olympic and Paralympic athlete is accused of murdering his model girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine's Day last year.

But the 27-year-old says he mistook her for an intruder.

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