Army hands over mur­der sus­pects

Lesotho Times - - Front Page - Pas­cali­nah Kabi

THE Le­sotho De­fence Force ( LDF) has handed over two of its mem­bers to the po­lice sus­pected of mur­der­ing a Thaba-tseka man.

Pri­vate Pitso Hla­heng (33) and Pri­vate Rele­bo­hile Thamae (26) are jointly charged with Se­tu­ru­mane Ramot­soari (55) of Le­sobeng, Ha-pe­terose, Thaba-tseka and Liau Thipa (52) of the same area.

The four are fac­ing charges of kid­nap­ping and mur­der­ing 34-year-old Lech­esa Thakholi of Le­sobeng Ha-let­sisa, Thaba-tseka whose corpse was dis­cov­ered in Sem­phethenyana, Maseru on 6 Septem­ber this year.

Ac­cord­ing to LDF spokesper­son, Colonel Ntlele Ntoi, the two sus­pects were handed over to the po­lice by the Mil­i­tary Po­lice. The duo has since been re­manded in cus­tody by the Thaba-tseka Mag­is­trate’s Court.

Colonel Ntoi said the junior of­fi­cers were handed over fol­low­ing joint in­ves­ti­ga­tions by the army and po­lice.

“The LDF pub­lic re­la­tions of­fice re­ceived a re­port that two mem­bers of the army were sus­pects in the mur­der of a man from Le­sobeng, in Thaba-tseka. It was dif­fi­cult to as­cer­tain what had re­ally hap­pened,” he told the Le­sotho Times yes­ter­day.

“In­ves­ti­ga­tions were un­der­taken by a joint LDF and po­lice team. The team’s in­ves­ti­ga­tions un­earthed com­pelling ev­i­dence as­so­ci­at­ing the duo to the mur­der and the place where the corpse was found.”

Colonel Ntoi in­di­cated the corpse was found near the Phuthi­at­sana River, adding the out­come of the in­ves­ti­ga­tions prompted the Mil­i­tary Po­lice to ar­rest the sus­pects and hand them over to the po­lice.

“The two sus­pects are still in po­lice cus­tody and I must men­tion their al­leged crime has noth­ing to do with the army. They are fac­ing the charges in their per­sonal ca­pac­ity,” he said, adding the pri­mary re­spon­si­bil­ity of the army was to pro­tect the coun­try, its peo­ple and their prop­er­ties.

In a separate in­ter­view yes­ter­day, ThabaTseka Po­lice Deputy Sta­tion Com­man­der, Su­per­in­ten­dent Ra­mone Ra­mone con­firmed the de­vel­op­ment.

“It is true that two mem­bers of the army — Pitso Hla­heng and Rele­bo­hile Thamae —were ar­rested on 10 Septem­ber in their per­sonal ca­pac­ity fol­low­ing the kid­nap and mur­der of Lech­esa Thakholi,” he said.

“The duo and their ac­com­plice ap­peared in court to­day (yes­ter­day). They are still in po­lice cus­tody while wait­ing to ap­ply for bail.”

Su­per­in­ten­dent Ra­mone said re­ports showed the de­ceased al­legedly had an ar­gu­ment with one of the sus­pects — Mr Thipa — who worked at Mr Ramot­soari’s busi­ness in Thaba-tseka as a se­cu­rity guard.

He said it is al­leged Mr Thipa called Mr Ramot­soari to re­port his dis­pute with Mr Thakholi.

“It is al­leged that Ramot­soari, who works at Kao Min­ing, called the two army of­fi­cers who acted in their per­sonal ca­pac­ity to kid­nap and mur­der Lech­esa Thakholi,” Su­per­in­ten­dent Ra­mone added.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Lesotho

© PressReader. All rights reserved.