Psychologist’s report needed on mother, 18, in beheading case
A psychologist’s report was needed to come to a decision in sentencing one of the four found guilty of killing Chatsworth woman Desiree Murugan, said Durban High Court Judge Thoba Poyo-Dlwati on Friday.
She was referring to 18-yearold mother Mbali Magwala. The judge called for the report after the testimony of Department of Social Development social worker and probation officer Mahoshni Naidoo last week.
Thuso Thelejane, Mlungisi Ndlovu and Magwala were minors at the time of Murugan’s murder in 2014. Her decapitated body, with 192 stab wounds, was found on a field in Shallcross. Her head was found in a shallow grave at the Mfume, South Coast home of traditional healer Sbonakaliso Mbili. Mbili had reportedly offered R2 million for the head of a white, coloured or Indian woman. The judge convicted the four in January.
On Friday, Magwala’s lawyer, Rhema Mahabeer, called Naidoo’s report biased. Naidoo had recommended a prison sentence for Magwala, because she had showed no remorse for her part in planning and covering up the murder and she was motivated by money and fear. Mahabeer argued that Naidoo’s report was inconsistent with what Magwala told the court and that Naidoo had passed judgment on Magwala because of bias.
Naidoo had agreed with Mahabeer that Magwala was not present at the Chatsworth murder scene but had washed the head in a bucket, according to Mahabeer, which she said she did under duress.
The matter was adjourned until October 3. – Zainul Dawood-ANA