Karabo ‘could have been killed in ritual’ Accused contradicts original police statement
NOW that the media ban preventing reportage on Sandile Mantsoe’s case has been lifted, the alleged ritualistic motive for Karabo Mokoena’s murder can now be revealed.
Mantsoe stands accused of killing Mokoena, his girlfriend, after she went missing on April 28.
Her charred remains were found soon after in a shallow grave in Lyndhurst.
Before yesterday’s court ruling, the testimony of the investigating officer, Captain Phillip Radebe, on May 24, laying out what he called the State’s “very strong” case against the accused, could not be reported.
According to Radebe, Mantsoe and Mokoena broke up in April after the accused “brutally assaulted” her.
On the night of April 27, Mantsoe was seen entering his home at Sandton Skye Apartments with Mokoena. It was the last time she was seen alive.
On May 10, Mokoena’s family asked police to question Mantsoe, with the boyfriend denying any knowledge of her whereabouts.
According to Radebe, after arresting Mantsoe, he confessed that after killing her, he had taken Karabo’s body to veld in the Bramley area, where he put a tyre on it, doused it with swimming pool acid and petrol and then set it alight. Mantsoe later pointed out where he had done so.
“It’s still unclear whether the deceased was alive or not at the time ( Mantsoe) burned her; the post-mortem report is still outstanding,” said Radebe.
He said that Mantsoe had confessed to the motive behind the crime as well.
After he fell in love with Mokoena, he introduced her to a ritual in which they mixed blood to bond, but also to ensure his business as a forex trader would succeed.
The pair also allegedly got matching cross-shaped tattoos.
“The applicant’s business was no longer doing well after he and the deceased terminated their affair,” said Radebe, and Mantsoe believed he been jinxed after the break-up.
Radebe said Mantsoe decided “he had no option but to sacrifice the deceased and cut the bond”.
However, in Mantsoe’s affidavit submitted to the court, he said he had found Mokoena’s body only after leaving her at his apartment for about two hours on April 28.
“I panicked. I was so scared everyone was going to think I killed her, as I was already being painted as an abusive boyfriend.”
He went to look for a rubbish bin to transport her body to his car, where he admitted to burning the body with petrol.
“Karabo had been suicidal... A couple of weeks back, she tried to commit suicide.”
Mantsoe denied the ritualistic aspects claimed by the State.
He also insisted he had been coerced into pointing out the body and that his statement had been given only under the threat that police officers would assault him.