A woman was arrested and sentenced to 10-year imprisonment for stealing a newborn baby at the hospital while her mother was fast asleep.
South African court handed down the sentence to the woman on Monday, August 15, 2016 19 years after she committed the offence.
In his ruling, a judge in the High Court in Cape Town emphasised the seriousness of the crime by the 52-year-old woman.
The kidnapping victim, who her family named Zephany Nurse, was taken from a maternity ward at Groote Schuur Hospital in 1997. Her kidnapper raised her as her own.
The girl’s real identity came to light in February 2015, when her younger biological sister began attending high school and pupils pointed out her remarkable likeness to a final-year student.
The younger girl told her parents, who met the older girl and immediately thought she could be their long-lost child.
The judge said the crime was premeditated and too serious not to warrant a jail sentence.
Zephany, who is now said be pregnant, was raised under a different name and has shunned the media spotlight on the case.
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