Former tennis player Bob Hewitt jailed for six years for rape
Former Australian tennis player Bob Hewitt has been sentenced to six years of imprisonment by a South Afican court for rape and sexual assault on underage girls.
South African judge Bert Bam sentenced Hewitt on two counts of rape and one of sexual assault on girls he coached in the 1980s and 1990s. The judge also criticized Hewitt for not showing remorse during the trial. One of the victims said that Hewitt had sexually assaulted her when she was just 12 years old.
Hewitt has been ordered to pay $8,500 to aid in campaigns against sexual violence. Hewitt pleaded before the judge to take his poor health into account before giving the judgement. He also added that he had suffered from stroke in 2010 and a heart attack in 2011.
His wife Delaille Hewitt requested the judge not to send her husband to jail.
"I have never had to beg before but I am asking you from the bottom of my heart to please let my husband return to the farm as I could not survive without him,” she said.
Hewitt won nine Grand Slam doubles and six Grand Slam mixed doubles titles in his career. He also reached the semifinals of the men’s singles at the Australian Open. The 75-year-old was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of fame in 1992, but his name was removed in 2012 following charges of sexual assault against him.