Saturday, July 3, 1999 Published at 21:42 GMT 22:42 UK
Gang rape and murder stuns South Africa
Mourners carry the coffin of rape victim Valencia Farmer
South African political leaders pledged to fight crime at the funeral on Saturday of Valencia Farmer, the 14-year-old victim of a Cape Town gang rape and murder.
ANC provincial parliament member Shaun Beyleveld said Valencia's death violated the post-apartheid vision for children in the new South Africa.
"We want to enjoy our freedom."
His comments came in the wake of a spate of murders of children and gang rapes that have horrified the country.
Six-year-old Veronique Maans was buried last week after her body was found half-buried in a sandy area near Cape Town.
And on Friday, a 28-year-old Brazilian journalist was gang-raped by around six men who followed her as she was walking back to her Johannesburg apartment, according to South African police.
South Africa's Rape Crisis organisation reported this week that over one million South Africans are raped every year.
Valencia Farmer was left for dead last Sunday by her attackers - but crawled to the door of her house despite 42 stab wounds and a slashed throat.
Four suspects were arrested and a fifth was questioned on Friday.
Her killing was so brutal that local residents of her mixed-race township held demonstrations and about 100 people attended the suspects' initial court hearing to demand that they be denied bail.
Police and soldiers surrounded the courthouse to keep protesters back and one suspect asked to be kept in police custody out of fear of mob justice.