Nobel laureate Gordimer robbed

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The Independent Online

South African Nobel laureate for literature Nadine Gordimer was robbed and locked in a store room by thieves who assaulted her in her home, police said yesterday.

Sergeant Sanku Tsunke said Ms Gordimer, 83, was robbed of cash and jewellery when three unknown men gained entrance to her home at about 10.30 on Thursday morning. She was assaulted when she refused to hand over her wedding ring but did not sustain serious injuries.

Sgt Tsunke said that the men held up Ms Gordimer and a domestic worker. One of the men then took her to a bedroom and demanded she open the safe. She handed over cash and jewellery, but would not part with her wedding ring from her marriage to art dealer Reinhold Cassirer, who died in 2001. "The suspects then locked both Gordimer and her domestic worker in a store room and fled the scene," Sgt Tsunke said.

He said the domestic worker had managed to press a panic button, triggering an alert with a security company. Guards arrived about half an hour later and released the women. No arrests have yet been made.

Ms Gordimer, who was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1991, is noted for her novels and short stories about the inhumanity of apartheid. Several of her works were once banned in her home country.