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Ina Bonnette taking each day as it comes

In July 2013 the High Court in Pretoria handed down a life sentence to her former husband Johan Kotze.

FILE: Ina Bonnette says she is a stronger person today exactly three years since her son was shot dead. Picture: Supplied.

JOHANNESBURG - Ina Bonnette says she is a stronger person today exactly three years since her son was shot dead and she was sexually assaulted and tortured by her ex-husband known as the "Modimolle Monster".

In July 2013 the High Court in Pretoria handed down a life sentence to her former husband Johan Kotze and his three co-accused.

Kotze and Andries Sithole were convicted of murdering Bonnette's 19-year-old son.

Bonnette says she has made a choice to live every day to the fullest.

"We are focused, but yes you always think back. I was extremely emotional yesterday to think three years ago we were still a family. But we made a choice to stand up again and take every day as it comes."

In 2013, the North Gauteng High Court denied Kotze and three co-accused leave to appeal.

Kotze was handed two life sentences in July for the gang-rape of his estranged wife Ina Bonnette.

He was also found guilty of murdering Bonnette's teenage son Conrad in January 2012.

Kotze was sentenced to an additional 25 years in prison, while his two co-accused were handed an extra 18 years behind bars for kidnapping and seriously assaulting Bonnette.

Dismissing the applications, Judge Bert Bam said there was no prospect of success on appeal.

After finding the men guilty in July, Bam described Bonnette's gang-rape as "gruesome, shocking and merciless".

He said it was the most humiliating crime that a woman could experience.

The judge said he couldn't find a reason to give Kotze anything less than life in prison.