The Station Strangler

Hello, my Freaky Darlings!

To celebrate the release of my rather dark serial killer thriller, Requiem in E Sharp, I’m going to blog about a different South African serial killer every week over the next couple months. I hope you find them as interesting as I do.

Norman Afzal Simons, The Station Strangler

This week I’ll be telling you all about Norman Afzal Simons, The Station Strangler.

Norman was a 5th-grade teacher in Mitchels Plain (that’s in Cape Town), who listened to classical music, and spoke seven languages, including French. All his victims were young boys between the ages of nine and thirteen.  He was called The Station Strangler because he lured his victims from train stations. He sodomised and then strangled them. The boys were found face down, hands tied behind their backs, in shallow sandy graves. Their underwear was sometimes found around their necks, probably used as a garrotte.

Norman started killing young boys in 1986 and was arrested in 1994. He killed 22 young boys over an eight-year period. He claimed that he’d been sodomised by his older stepbrother from when he was 8 until he was 14 (the same ages of his victims). His brother was murdered in 1991. Norman apparently also suffered from identity issues and depression.

Norman’s trial lasted for 3 months and he was sentenced to life in prison. He is serving his sentence at the Drakenstein Maximum Correctional Facility in Paarl.

In his confession, Norman wrote: “I am nothing. I am dirty. I am filthy and not worthy. I am sorry for letting you down. Don’t get caught in the same thing. I really regret everything. It’s hard, it is very hard to be possessed by unknown forces. These forces cannot be explained by medication.”


If you’re fascinated by serial killers, you may enjoy my serial killer thriller – Requiem in E Sharp.

Joan De la Haye_Requiem


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3 thoughts on “The Station Strangler

  1. “Most sexual offenders against children are male, although female offenders may account for 0.4% to 4% of convicted sexual offenders. On the basis of a range of published reports, McConaghy estimates a 10 to 1 ratio of male-to-female child molesters.” It is believed that the true number of female pedophiles is underrepresented by available estimates, and that reasons for this may include a “societal tendency to dismiss the negative impact of sexual relationships between young boys and adult women, as well as women’s greater access to very young children who cannot report their abuse”, among other explanations.

  2. Simons was an intelligent individual, playing classical music and capable of speaking seven languages including English, Afrikaans, Xhosa and French. He was employed as a Grade 5 teacher at Alpine Primary School in East Ridge, Mitchell’s Plain. Simons’ victims were all young boys aged between 9 and 13. Simons and his victims were all mixed race from the Cape Malays community.

  3. His youngest confirmed victim was 8 years old. This is also the age which he claimed his brother first sodomised him.

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