Bloody end to 2014 for revellers
CELEBRATIONS to mark the end of 2014 ended on a bloody note with 31 revellers losing their lives across the country to fatal stabbings and gunshot wounds while 20 rape cases were also reported.
Lesotho Mounted Police Service ( LMPS) spokesperson, Senior Inspector Lebona Mohloboli, said in an interview this week that most of the perpetrators of the murders, in the period 28 December 2014 to 3 January 2015, used knives and guns while allegedly under the influence of alcohol.
Snr Insp Mohloboli added that 14 attempted murders were also reported across the country. He said most of the crimes were committed at public bars while some victims were stabbed or raped on their way to or from the bars.
“Alcohol has played a major role in these murders, rape cases and attempted murders as our team found out when they conducted their investigations,” Sr Insp Mohloboli said, adding that the number of fatalities this year are more than those recorded during the festive period last year though he did not have last year’s figures. The challenge for us as the LMPS is to ensure we implement new strategies to fight crime during this year’s festive seasons.”
Asked on what measures the police has taken to stem the violent acts, Snr Insp Mohloboli said: “The police visited public bars to discuss with the owners how best we can fight crime together but, unfortunately, some of them were uncooperative. This was because when the police arrived in some of the bars to assess the situation, some of the owners would hide their patrons and give a different story while some were operating for long hours without traders licences which contributes to the high crime rate.”
Snr Insp Mohloboli also said that 26 people were arrested across the country during the festive season for committing various crimes.
He said the LMPS was also conducting operations across the country in which they have so far confiscated nine illegal firearms and arrested six suspects now awaiting trial.
File picture: Deported Basotho at Maseru District immigration grounds.