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Emotions run high, tempers flare after Zephany’s kidnapper is sentenced

A 52-year-old Lavender Hill woman was sentenced to 10 years in prison for kidnapping the 3-day-old baby.

FILE: The convicted kidnapper in the Zephany Nurse trial makes her way to the Western Cape High Court. Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - Zephany Nurse's biological family have welcomed the 10-year sentence handed to the woman who abducted her 19 years ago.

A 52-year-old Lavender Hill woman has been sentenced to 10 years in prison for kidnapping the three-day-old baby in 1997.

Judge John Hlophe handed down sentence at the Western Cape High Court earlier today.

Emotions ran high and tempers flared outside court as the kidnapper's family hurled abuse at the Nurse family.



Zephany's biological father, Morne, had to intervene. Her paternal grandmother, Zephra Nurse, however, remained calm saying she's glad justice has prevailed.

"No, we don't have any emotions, we feel good that it's done."

The kidnapper's family demanded to be left alone as they shouted the young woman will always belong to them.

#ZephanyNurse Zephra Nurse says she hopes this case prevents people from kidnapping children. SF pic.twitter.com/LND2wgTfho

Grandmother Zephra says she is relieved her granddaughter's kidnapper has been locked up.

The teen was reunited with her biological family last year, but has chosen to live with the kidnapper's husband in the home where she was raised.

Zephra says her family is relieved the court process is over.

"I feel very good, everything is finished now. We can start our lives again after a year and eight months, because our live stood still."

She says Judge Hlophe made the best decision to imprison the kidnapper to 10 years behind bars.

"I think it [the sentence] was harsh enough for the future; people will leave our children alone in future. It is something good."

Zephany's biological family believes the relationship with her will improve once she has child of her own.

Her maternal grandmother, Marilyn Francis, says she believes the 19-year-old pregnant woman will reconcile with her biological family when she becomes a mother.

"She is going to feel the pain that her mother felt. She will give birth and feel what it's like if somebody stole her child."