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Xenophobia: 132 people convicted from 2008 attacks

Justice Minister Michael Masutha said sentences handed down ranged between three years and life imprisonment.

Justice Minister Michael Masutha said sentences handed down ranged between three years and life imprisonment. Picture: stock.xchng

JOHANNESBURG - Justice Minister Michael Masutha on Tuesday said while there were over 300 people arrested in connection with xenophobia in 2008, 132 people were convicted in 79 cases.

He was responding to reports that there was only one person convicted for the murders of more than 60 people.

Masutha said many of the cases collapsed because witnesses were illegal immigrants and their testimony was not reliable.

[LISTEN] _Michael Masutha sets the records straight regarding arrests made connected to xenophobia. _

This year, a fresh wave of xenophobic attacks left seven people dead in Kwazulu-Natal and Gauteng.

Masutha said the sentences handed down ranged between three years and life imprisonment.

"There were cases of public violence where people would be convicted for between three to six years there were cases, for murder, where the minimum people got was in the region of 16 years all the way up to life."

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