Former Air Force sergeant Flippie Venter, convicted of strangling a child prostitute in Burundi and later wiping out his children with an R4 rifle, will be released on parole after serving 13 years, Rapport reported on Sunday.
His now ex-wife, Millie, who survived the bloodbath, told the publication she again feared for her life and would as soon as possible obtain a protection order to stop him from coming anywhere near her once he walks out of prison.
Venter was in 2006 sentenced to 10 years in prison for shooting his children Janco, 4, and Millize, 5, during a domestic dispute in their Hoedspruit home on the air force base. He also shot Millie in the stomach, News24 previously reported.
The Supreme Court of Appeal later increased his sentence to 18 years.
He committed the murders while out on bail after being charged with killing Therése Nkeshimana, 14, for which he was later convicted. He was also found guilty of going AWOL in Burundi and assaulting a Burundi security guard, but acquitted on charges of rape and defeating the ends of justice.
A military court sentenced him to 24 years in prison for his crimes.
Venter claimed tension emanating from the Burundi matter had contributed to the shooting of his family, Beeld reported at the time.
Singabakho Nxumalo, spokesperson for the Department of Correctional Services, said Venter’s sentences had been served concurrently.
While he confirmed that Venter had appeared before the parole board and that his application had been successful, he wouldn’t tell Rapport when Venter would be released.
He would initially only have been eligible for parole in July, but benefitted from the Constitutional Court ruling that allowed a certain category of prisoners who had committed crimes before October 1, 2004, but were only sentenced afterwards to receive parole earlier.
In fact, Venter was already eligible for parole in December 2015 after serving nine years of his sentence, the publication reported.
Nxumalo said Venter’s victims’ families had been invited to the parole hearing. Millie had indicated she was unwilling to participate in the process, but in writing said Venter must serve his full sentence. Attempts to reach Nkeshimana and the security guard’s family in Burundi were unsuccessful, he said.
Twenty other criteria had also been considered during the parole process.
– Compiled by Tammy Petersen