Zephany’s abductor given 10 years’ jail

The woman who kidnapped Zephany Nurse from Groote Schuur Hospital 19 years ago as she lay sleeping in her mother’s arms was sentenced to 10 years in prison yesterday.

Judge John Hlophe said‚ in handing down the sentence in the Cape Town High Court that the woman had ample time to return the child to her biological parents but chose not to.

“It is very clear you caused so much harm to the Nurse family. And one would have expected you to apologise but you chose not to‚” he said.

The 51-year-old was convicted earlier this year of kidnapping‚ fraud and contraventions of sections of the Children’s Act. She cannot be identified as it would identify the victim by the name she is commonly known.

The story attracted international attention. Media in the UK dubbed the girl South Africa’s “Maddie McCann”‚ after the girl who disappeared in Portugal in 2007. — Tiso Black Star Group Digital