Al­leged toi­let killers de­nied bail, may face an­other rape charge

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - NEWS - ASANDA SOKANYILE

TWO COUSINS ac­cused of the rape and mur­der of 19-year-old Si­nox­olo Mafe­vuka in March have been de­nied bail for fear they will in­ter­fere with wit­nesses and spark pub­lic dis­or­der.

They also face a pos­si­ble sec­ond rape charge be­ing added, pend­ing an iden­ti­fi­ca­tion pa­rade by a vic­tim who was taken to the East­ern Cape.

The case made head­lines in March after the mur­der just days pre­vi­ously of 16- yearold Franziska Blöch­liger in the Tokai For­est. A man­hunt was launched and less than 36 hours later three peo­ple were de­tained, prompt­ing com­par­isons which sug­gested the po­lice re­sponse to Mafe­vuka’s mur­der had been less de­ci­sive.

In the lat­ter case, the two male ac­cused, aged 22 and 28, were ar­rested two weeks after Mafe­vuka’s body was found stuffed head first into a pub­lic toi­let me­tres from her SST in­for­mal set­tle­ment home in Khayelit­sha’s Town Two.

The court has or­dered the iden­tity of the two men may not be made pub­lic.

They both looked calm as they ap­peared be­fore mag­is­trate Xolani Menyiwe. Mem­bers of the SST in­for­mal set­tle­ment and So­cial Jus­tice Coali­tion were in at­ten­dance, hop­ing to bring pres­sure to en­sure the two did not get bail.

Dur­ing pro­ceed­ings the court heard the in­ter­ven­tion of the ac­cused’s aunt Zan­diswa Mafi­l­ika had had a great im­pact on the bail de­ci­sion.

Mag­is­trate Menyiwe said yes­ter­day the two cousins would not be granted bail for fear of “in­ter­fer­ence with wit­nesses who are known to the ac­cused and their fam­ily”.

“One of the wit­nesses is a friend of the ac­cused, while the other, the al­leged sec­ond boyfriend of the de­ceased, is also known to the ac­cused,” said Menyiwe.

The mag­is­trate added he was not con­vinced the duo would ad­here to their bail con­di­tions if they were granted bail. “I am also wor­ried about the dis­tur­bance of pub­lic or­der as I have seen in many in­stances where ac­cused are re­leased on bail and killed in ar­eas where they again went back to com­mit fur­ther crimes.”

In­ves­ti­gat­ing of­fi­cer Bu­tiki Tsha­bal­ala also pre­sented to the court a rape case pend­ing against the two ac­cused.

Pros­e­cu­tor Ndakhele Mlung­wana asked the court to al­low the men to be part of an ID pa­rade as the al­leged vic­tim would be re­turn­ing from the East­ern Cape.

Ma­jor Gen­eral Jo­han Brandt told Week­end Ar­gus after the judg­ment he was happy with the court’s de­ci­sion as it “showed that the court took the the in­ter­ests of the peo­ple of SST and Khayelit­sha into con­sid­er­a­tion”.

“This also gives SAPS the op­por­tu­nity to in­ves­ti­gate fur­ther,” he added.

The SJC’s Non­tem­biso Kibi was also pleased, say­ing the de­ci­sion would en­sure there was no in­tim­i­da­tion of wit­nesses, and the com­mu­nity would not take the law into their own hands.

The case was post­poned to Au­gust 19, for a trial date.

Si­nox­olo Mafekuva

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