Bringing a closure to South Africa’s decade old baby napping case, where a baby had been stolen since 1997 from her mother who had been knocked out from drugs given her to recover from a cesarean birth, which led to a 19 year-long search for the girl’s abductor, the woman accused of committing the grievous crime has been found guilty.
The accused whose name still remains withheld for the sake of protection of the victim was accused by the police of fraudulently claiming to be the girl’s biological mother ever since she snatched her from the hospital in Cape Town. The woman who is now fifty years old, had her crime discovered when she had enrolled the girl in a school where her younger sister (who shares an uncanny resemblance with her) was also going. DNA tests were later carried out and proved that the two were indeed related.
By way of defense prior to and during the case, the accused had claimed that she was led to believe that she had indeed adopted the child when the baby was handed to her at a busy railway station by another woman who could not be found. She also claimed to have signed; currently missing; adoption papers. The claims were dismissed as fairy-tales by the Presiding judge.
The abducted child who has chosen to continue living with the man who brought her up as a father complained over the weekend about the media’s portrayal of the accused who she still views as her mother.
It is doubtful whether this can be classified as a happy ending as losses seem to be registered all round; for the biological parents who have lost and will no doubt keep losing opportunities to play different roles in their daughter’s life, for the girl and her father who are no doubt rocked by the discovery of the accused’s betrayal and for the accused herself who will soon enough be rewarded with a befitting sentence following this guilty verdict of the case.