[C] 13 March 2019
Published by Lucinda Dordley
Three suspects were sentenced by the Western Cape High Court after an in-depth investigation revealed that they were running brothels in the Milnerton, Table View, Big Bay, and Belville areas of the Western Cape. Shantel Reyneke-Bridger (47), Juan Francois Warren (40) and Robin Reyneke (28) were part of a syndicate that operated a human and sex trafficking ring, and pleaded guilty to a collective 128 charges in court on Wednesday, March 6 2019.
Their charges included the kidnapping of a minor, trafficking of persons for sexual purposes, debt bondage, assault with the intent to do grievous bodily harm, and living on the proceeds of prostitution and extortion, which amounted to more than R3-million.
The group’s modus operandi included recruiting young females, including minors, to work in brothels by grooming them before sexually exploiting them. The victims were deprived of their freedom while they were kept in the brothels and were regularly assaulted. They were also forced to partake in criminal activities, including shoplifting, extortion, and housebreaking.
The victims were also manipulated with threats of grievous bodily harm being done to their friends and family.
The several clients who made use of the brothel’s services were extorted between 2012 and 2015, and paid the group well to ensure their sexual encounters would not be posted on social media.
Shantel Reyneke-Bridger was sentenced to 20 years imprisonment for two counts of racketeering, of which 10 years are suspended with five years with “stringent conditions”.
Juan Francios Warren was also convicted for two counts of racketeering and received the same sentence.
Robin Reyneke was also sentenced to 20 years’ imprisonment for two counts of racketeering, suspended for five years with stringent conditions. Additionally, he was sentenced to pay a fine of R50 000 or face two years of imprisonment. Other sentences from counts 16,17, and 71-89 were suspended for five years with stringent conditions.
The cases against the other seven remaining suspects continues at the Cape Town High Court – these include Camilla Amelia de Waal Roussouw, Fareez Allie, Achmat Toffa, Babalwa Nozigqwaba, Norman Edwin Bridger, Michael D’Oliveira, and Natasha Chang.