5-year jail term handed to Gqeberha soccer coach for sexual assault

During proceedings the court heard allegations that Sizwe Mphini abused several other boys who were apparently too afraid to report the crimes. The youngest of his victims was eight years old while the oldest was 14.

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CAPE TOWN - A Gqeberha soccer coach has been sentenced to five years behind bars for sexually assaulting four boys between 2017 and 2018.

During proceedings the court heard allegations that Sizwe Mphini abused several other boys who were apparently too afraid to report the crimes.

The youngest of his victims was eight years old while the oldest was 14.

The National Prosecuting Authority saID there's no minimum sentence provision for sexual assault and the court therefore used its own discretion while handing down sentence.

The Port Elizabeth Regional Court found Mphini guilty on four counts of sexual assault.

He was sentenced to five years imprisonment for each count but they were ordered to run concurrently.

In 2016 the 28-year-old Gqeberha man approached a group of young boys playing soccer and asked them if they had a coach.

They said no and Mphini volunteered to be their coach and said they'd call their team Mighty Eagles.

The court heard the excited children agreed to the accused's proposal after he promised to buy them soccer jerseys. But he never made good on that promise.

Mphini started sexually assaulting the boys during practice and would then invite them to his home to eat and watch cartoons, instructing them to keep his crimes a secret.

The boys testified they were too afraid to tell their parents at first, but a 10-year-old victim alerted his mother, which led to the accused's arrest.

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