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South African 'humiliation video' makers plead guilty

Four white South African men have pleaded guilty to making a video which showed elderly black cleaners being humiliated, as well as being duped into drinking what was apparently urine-tainted soup. The video, shot by the four former students at the University of the Free State, showed the four women and one man forced to run a race barefoot while wearing their cleaning uniforms and being taken to a bar where they drank alcohol and danced to Afrikaans music in what was portrayed as an initiation rite.

The video also showed one student urinating into a container of soup. He said: "This is the final ingredient," then heated the soup in a microwave oven and gave it to the elderly cleaners.

In a Bloemfontein court yesterday the men asked for forgiveness from the victims. The court is expected to announce its decision on Friday, although a custodial sentence has been ruled out. Mothusi Lepheana, head of the Free State Human Rights Commission, said: "They have agreed to a fine but they have not agreed to an amount."