1. ITV Report

British woman tortured with blowtorch and killed in South Africa

  • Video report by ITV News Africa Correspondent John Ray

A British woman has died after being tortured with a blowtorch, tied up and shot alongside her husband in their home in South Africa.

Susan Howarth, 64, and Robert Lynn, 66, were attacked at their farm in Dullstroom by masked raiders before being dumped and left for dead by the side of a road following a long ordeal.

While he survived the attack, Ms Howarth, from Southsea, Hampshire, died of her injuries on Tuesday morning.

Robert Lynn, right, showed ITV News Africa Correspondent John Ray the scene of the attack. Credit: ITV News

Mr Lynn told a local newspaper the incident took place at around 3am on Sunday.

He said: "I woke up because the dogs were barking and there was a racket at the bedroom window.

"After I stood up, I heard glass breaking. I suppose that is when they started shooting at us.

Robert Lynn demonstrated how a blowtorch had been used on him and his wife. Credit: ITV News

"They kept on asking where the money is. I told them that we don't keep money but they would not believe me."

He said he gave them a small amount of money and his bank cards but the couple were tortured and put in the back of their pick-up truck.

Mr Lynn said he believed the robbers were driving them somewhere to withdraw money but instead the men shot the couple and left them for dead by the side of a backroad.

The couple were attacked by masked raiders in their remote home. Credit: ITV News

He said: "I crossed the road, crawling most of the way. On the other side I saw Susan, lying in a ditch. Her hands tied behind her back. She was bleeding from her head."

Ms Howarth was taken to hospital but a few days later the decision was made to turn off her life support.

Farmers say armed raids, like this one from 2013, are becoming more sophisticated and more common.

A Foreign and Commonwealth Office spokesman said they are supporting Ms Howarth's family.

"Our thoughts are with them at this difficult time. We are in contact with the local authorities," he added.

The attack occurred in remote farmland in Dullstroom, South Africa. Credit: ITV News