Otjiwarongo man gets 37 years for strangling woman to death

16 Aug 2017 14:50pm
WINDHOEK, 16 AUG (NAMPA) - An Otjiwarongo resident found guilty in the High Court of strangling a woman to death and setting her body alight in October 2015, was on Wednesday jailed for 37 years.
This is in respect of the death of Elizabeth Ganses, whose partly naked and burnt body was found between the Otjiwarongo Military Base and Orwetoveni Township in the early morning hours of 31 October that year.
Ivan Hoebeb, 27, was sentenced after he was found guilty on counts of murder with direct intention to kill, theft of a SIM card of a cellular phone that belonged to the deceased and attempting to defeat or obstruct the course of justice by violating a dead body when he set it alight to destroy evidence.
On the first count of murder with direct intention to kill, Hoebeb was sent to jail for 34 years.
He got a one-year-prison term on the second count of theft and six years on the last count of attempting to defeat or obstruct the course of justice, of which three years were suspended for a period of five years.
The whole sentence imposed on the second count and three years of the sentence handed down in the third count were all ordered to run concurrently with the punishment imposed in the first count of murder.
In the result, Hoebeb was sent to jail for an effective total of 37 years.
High Court Judge Christie Liebenberg delivered the sentence in the matter Wednesday morning.
Meanwhile, Hoebeb's Government-sponsored defence lawyer Milton Engelbercht said he will lodge an urgent appeal before court against the 34 year sentence on the first count of murder because the punishment is too severe in comparison with sentences handed down in other cases of similar circumstances.
Liebenberg said Hoebeb's evidence in respect of killing the deceased was mere fabrication and afterthoughts, and was therefore rejected by the court as false.
Hoebeb pleaded not guilty to all charges and did not disclose the basis of his defence.
Late Ganses was walking along a footpath in the vicinity of the army base when Hoebeb attacked her from behind.
He stabbed Ganses and thereafter strangled her to death with either bare hands or by using her trousers or belt, and set her body alight to destroy evidence.
Henry Muhongo appeared for prosecution.