No jail-time for 'Advocate Barbie', says expert

By Marisa Oosthuizen

A forensic criminologist recommends that convicted sex offender Cezanne Visser should not see the inside of a prison.

During mitigation of sentence, forensic criminologist Eon Sonnekus told the North Gauteng High Court that Visser should receive a suspended sentence or be submitted to rigorous correctional supervision.

"The sincere remorse of the offender to the victims is indicative of the rehabilitation that is already underway," he testified.

Sonnekus based his findings on his consultations with Visser, including her testimony and psychological reports that were delivered during the trial. He told the court that she constantly told him that she was sorry for what happened.

Sonnekus submitted a proposed corrective programme of supervision that would run for a maximum of three years and include among other community service and participating in a forensic criminological rehabilitation programme.

In his report he indicated that Visser had already suffered from severe depression when she entered into a relationship with former boyfriend Dirk Prinsloo, who was the alleged instigator behind the crimes. Sonnekus said that her depression rendered her hopeless to resist Prinsloo's manipulation in committing the offences.

Dirk Prinsloo skipped bail and fled the country in May 2006. He was arrested in Belarus, Russia after he attempted to rob a bank

He said in his opinion Visser had already undergone a positive change during the course of the trial and had shown her aversion for Prinsloo and her deeds.

"...he experimented with different things that, in retrospect, seem disgusting today," Sonnekus recalled Visser's testimony.

Sonnekus said the court should in addition consider that Visser is a first offender with no prior convictions against her.

In October of last year Visser was found guilty on 11 charges relating to sexual crimes committed against young women and orphans.

Prinsloo is yet to answer to the sex-related charges against him. Last week a Belarus court sentenced him to 14 years in prison for theft, assault and attempted robbery.


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