Serial murderer sentenced to fourth life imprisonment term plus 80 years for killing elderly women

Among the women killed was Hetta Potgieter who was murdered at Macadamia Old Age Home in Mbombela in 2018.

 Shaun Oosthuizen. Photo: Supplied

The Pretoria Regional Court sentenced the serial murderer, Shaun Oosthuizen (42), to an additional fourth direct life imprisonment term for murder, plus 80 years imprisonment for robbery with aggravating circumstances today, May 16.

In a statement released by the Hawks, Oosthuizen’s various crimes were detailed.

“On July 8, 2018, the accused travelled from Gauteng to Mbombela where he went to Macadamia Old Age Home to rob and kill Henrietta Catharina (Hetta) Potgieter (85). He was arrested and was later released on bail after his persistent applications.

“Oosthuizen pleaded guilty to Potgieter’s murder on August 4, 2021 and was sentenced the following day to life imprisonment plus 15 years for robbery with aggravating circumstances.

“While he was out on bail in 2018, the accused committed another murder of an elderly woman, Barbara Esme Fenton (74), by strangling her to death on September 1, 2018 at her home in Alberton.”

The Hawks’ investigation led to the arrest of Oosthuizen immediately after the incident and he was further linked to another murder that occurred on June 24, 2018 in which Engela van Wyk (86) was killed and robbed at Rus ’n Bietjie Old Age Home in Springs.

“The case was finalised in which the accused was found guilty and sentenced to life imprisonment for Van Wyk’s murder and 15 years imprisonment for robbery with aggravating circumstances.

“In December 2019, Oosthuizen was sentenced to life imprisonment for Fenton’s death and 20 years imprisonment for robbery with aggravating circumstances. He was sentenced to serve a total of three life sentences for killing the three elderly women and 50 years for robbing them.”

The statement said that during his imprisonment Oosthuizen confessed to the investigating officer that he had killed other victims in Sunnyside and Roodepoort.

An investigation revealed that in December 2015, the accused broke into an old age home in Sunnyside where he robbed and killed Ema Gossen (93) and fled the scene with her jewellery valued at R50 000.

The investigation further linked him with another incident which took place in Roodepoort in August 2018 in which the accused used the same modus operandi. He murdered and robbed, Lillas Merry (77) and fled the scene with jewellery also valued at R50 000.

The court added extra life imprisonment term for murder plus 30 years imprisonment for aggravating circumstances, bringing the total sentences to four life imprisonment terms plus 80 years.

The Hawks’ provincial head, Major General Zodwa Mokoena, applauded the investigating team for securing such substantial life sentences.

“We appreciate the collaboration between the investigators and judiciary for ensuring that the heartless criminal, who tormented the elderly who could not fight for themselves is removed from the community,” she said.

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