In January of 2011, Raymond Buys, 15, began a three-month training course that was supposed to train him to be a game ranger. But that’s not quite what happened.
Buy’s mother said she sent him to Alex de Kooker’s Echo Wild Game Rangers camp an hour south of Johannesburg, South Africa “to make him a better man, to give him a better future.? Instead, Buys was forced into hard labor and then tortured when he didn’t meet expectations,?according to?Gerhard Oosthuizen who shared a tent with Mr. Buys.
Mr Buys was chained to his bed after he tried to escape and, forbidden from going to the bathroom, repeatedly soiled himself, according to a report in Beeld newspaper.
He was said to have told the court that on one occasion, when Mr Buys went to the toilet in a field while the recruits worked, he was forced to eat his own faeces.
On another, Mr Oosthuizen said, after Mr Buys tipped over a container of washing powder, he was forced to eat what he had spilled and vomited foam.
He said Mr Buys was beaten with planks, sticks and plastic pipes when he failed to work, the paper reported.?He was said to have claimed that he had once seen Mr Buys in a hut at the camp with a pillowcase over his head, being shocked with a stun gun by Mr de Koker and Mr Erasmus.” (Source: The Telegraph)
During this time Mrs. Buys, Raymond’s mother, was repeatedly denied access to her son for visits and she was only allowed to speak to him on speakerphone. Alex de Koker told her on the phone that her son was harming himself but Raymond denied the allegations and said that he was not doing it to himself. Mrs. Buys was called a week later and informed that he had been taken to the hospital for tests. When she arrived at the hospital, she found Raymond already near death.
“He was semi-conscious and convulsing, with his arm broken in two places. There were burns and wounds all over his body. Buys was severely malnourished and dehydrated, and a medical report predicted that his chances of recovery were ?virtually zero? (Source: The Daily Maverick)
Mr. de Koker,49, and camp employee Michael Erasmus, 20, have been charged with murder, child abuse and neglect, and two cases of assault with intent to commit bodily harm. (Source: The Telegraph)
I would have some hope that at least these men would pay for this horror that they inflicted on Mr. Buys, but Mr. de Koker has done this before. He has even been convicted of murdering a young man under similar circumstances! In 2009, de Koker was given a suspended sentence and allowed to go back to running his torture camp.
In 2009, when De Koker stood trial for the deaths of Calitz and Van der Walt, he got off with a suspended sentence over Calitz’s death, and escaped charges altogether for Van der Walt’s death, because it was ruled to have been caused by a heart attack. (Source: The Daily Maverick)
“The idea of the camp is to apparently make men of teens and to ‘cure’ feminine traits? in male youths?’ another way of saying gay reparative therapy, instead in this instance that therapy involved ?beating the gay out of the kid? ? torture and if torture didn’t effect the desired change, then certainly murder would; after all a dead teen is not a gay teen.” (Melanie Nathan)
Why? Why do we treat differences with such hatred? What does it matter if he was “effeminate”? Three young men are dead. Not only because one person chose to torture them but because society allowed him to. Mr. de Koker was not hurting for “students” because parents worried that their boys we not “manly” enough and PAID HIM to make men out of them. He MURDERED two teens and parents STILL sent their kids to him.