Retired British teacher ‘beaten, raped and stabbed to death’ at remote safari lodge she ran in South Africa
A retired British teacher Mrs Robinson, who ran a safari lodge in remote South Africa has been found beaten and stabbed to death in a brutal robbery. Police also believe that Christine Robinson may have been raped during the attack at the 125-acre Rra-Ditau Lodge, near the border with Botswana, after putting up a fierce struggle.Around £3,500, which Mrs Robinson had withdrawn from her bank account to pay staff wages, is also missing.
Mrs Robinson, who was originally from Liverpool, was discovered partially-clothed and rolled in a duvet in her private wing at the lodge by a member of staff. Cuts and bruises to her body indicated that she had fought back against her attacker, a police spokeswoman said. It is thought she died from a single stab wound to her neck.
South African police are now hunting for a farm worker who has not been seen since the murder which took place between Tuesday night and Wednesday morning.
Last night, the 59 year old, who bought her idyllic game farm with her husband 12 years ago, was described by her niece as ‘cheerful, popular and kind-hearted” who had treated her African staff ‘like family’.
Lehanne Sergison, from Kent, told the Daily Mail, her aunt ‘was the most wonderful woman – bubbly and full of fun, a born storyteller who talked to anyone. She was impossible to dislike and made friends easily. All her friends and family are heartbroken at hearing of her death.’
Mrs Robinson had taught English at a string of International schools around the world before settling in South Africa with her husband, Robbie, in the foothills of the Waterberg mountain range, two hours north-west of Johannesburg .
Mr Robinson died two years ago from cancer, but his widow decided to stay on alone at their pristine farm where she hosted guests in thatched cottages and conference facilities.
A post mortem will be carried out next week.
Lieutenant Colonel Ronel Otto, of the South African Police Service, confirmed a Zimbabwean worker was now being hunted in connection with the brutal murder.
‘We are not ruling out the possibility that other people were involved, but at the moment this particular member of staff, who has not been seen since Mrs Robinson’s body was found, is of particular interest to us.’
Attacks on farmers and their families is a serious issue in South Africa claiming an average of two lives every week, prompting the country’s Human Rights Commission to call a public hearing on the issue.
Within 24 hours of Mrs Robinson’s killing, there were two other violent robberies at farms in her region of South Africa, which included attacks on three women and a baby.