Man jailed for drinking with woman, raping her and then wrapping her dead body in a blanket

Derrick Ettiene Cloete received life behind bars following the brutal rape and murder of Katrina Prins. Picture: File image

Derrick Ettiene Cloete received life behind bars following the brutal rape and murder of Katrina Prins. Picture: File image

Published Feb 2, 2024


Almost 12 years after 36-year-old Katrina Prins was raped and murdered in the small Northern Cape town Steinkopf, the perpetrator has been jailed for life.

Derrick Ettiene Cloete, 42, was sentenced in the Springbok Regional Court.

The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) said the charges emanate from a December 2012 incident.

NPA spokesperson Mojalefa Senokoatsane said on the day, Prins had spent the day with Cloete consuming alcohol with various people at a place known as the Koffie Shop.

“The Koffie Shop is an empty building with no doors or windows next to the N7 National Road. It is an empty building where people will sit and drink,” Senokoatsane said.

“Throughout the day, the two were drinking and at some stage, the deceased went to her sister who was staying with her boyfriend at a nearby business called Stein Civils. The sister of the deceased begged her to sleep at her place as she could see that the deceased was too intoxicated,” he said.

“The deceased refused to sleep there, left the premises, and met up with the accused again and that was the last time her sister saw her alive.”

Senokoatsane said on the morning of December 30, Prins’ sister began looking for her as she was worried. Prins also had an infant.

The court heard that the sister tried calling Cloete who did not answer his phone.

Hours later the family were informed that Prins’ body was inside the Koffie Shop.

“The police were informed, and they found the naked body of the deceased wrapped in a blanket with her clothes,” Senokoatsane said.

“During their preliminary investigations at the scene, the investigating officer Warrant Officer Barnard noticed footprints, as well as dragging marks. It also seemed like somebody tried to wipe the scene clear with nearby bushes.”

He said while Barnard was at the scene he noticed movement in another part of the building and Cloete was caught jumping out of the building and arrested on the scene.

The NPA said during the trial Cloete denied any involvement in the rape and murder, saying that he consensual sex with Prins.

“The accused was arrested on the scene. The shoes of the accused were confiscated, as they resembled the footprints found on the scene. Further investigation revealed through DNA that the accused had sexual intercourse with the deceased,” Senokoatsane said.

“The accused also testified that he did not know what had happened to the victim as he had left him with some other man and that was the last time, he saw her.”

Senokoatsane said Cloete’s version was rejected by the court as false and not reasonably possibly true.

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