As well as being one of South Africa's best-known female footballers, Simelane was a voracious equality rights campaigner and one of the first women to live openly as a lesbian in Kwa Thema.
Her brutal murder took place last April, and since then a tide of violence against lesbian women in South Africa has continued to rise. Human rights campaigners say it is characterised by what they call "corrective rape" committed by men behind the guise of trying to "cure" lesbian women of their sexual orientation.
Now, a report by the international NGO ActionAid, backed by the South African Human Rights Commission, condemns the culture of impunity around these crimes, which it says are going unrecognised by the state and unpunished by the legal system.
The 28-year-old victim was attacked on December 13 in Richmond after she got out of her car, which bore a rainbow gay pride sticker. Police said the attackers made comments indicating they knew the woman, who lives openly with her female partner, was a lesbian.
The attack began when one of the men approached the woman, struck her with a blunt object and ordered her to strip. He then sexually assaulted her with the help of the others, according to detectives. When the group saw another person approaching, they forced the victim back into her car and took her to a burned-out apartment building.
She was raped again inside and outside the vehicle and left naked outside the building while her attackers took her wallet and drove off in her car, police said.