German tourist murder accused denied bail

Suspect was out on bail for another robbery

- By Mandla Khoza

Napoleon Joseph Nyalunga, who is accused of murdering German tourist Jorg Schnarr, 67, has been denied bail by the KaBokweni magistrate’s court in Mpumalanga.

This comes after the court was informed by the investigat­ing officer that the accused was currently out on bail in connection with another business robbery committed in Barberton, Mpumalanga.

Schnarr was shot twice during an attempted robbery on October 3, on road leading to Kruger National Park’s Numbi Gate.

The deceased, who was the driver of a Hyundai H1, was shot after he and three passengers were accosted by men driving a charcoal VW Golf R.

According to police, the deceased was with his wife and another couple when he was shot after an altercatio­n with the robbers. During the closing arguments, state prosecutor Adv Martin Brits told the court that the accused had committed a schedule 6 offence while he was on bail for another robbery.

“Your worship, bail applicatio­n on schedule 6 offence are very specific, that the accused should put exceptiona­l circumstan­ces on why he should be released.

“Here we are dealing with a bail applicatio­n of an applicant who was arrested and committed the crime while on bail for a robbery in Barberton where items of the victims were found in his possession.

“On this case, the accused lied that he had children, told the court that the car used in the commission of the crime was his ... but it was later found that it was registered to his brother. Should he be released on bail it will not be in the interest of justice,” Britz said.

After listening to arguments on both sides, magistrate Musa Mabuza concluded that the accused should not be granted bail.

“The court is of the view that the applicant failed to show exceptiona­l circumstan­ces to be released on bail, therefore bail is denied,” Mabuza said.

The case was postponed to January 24 to allow further police investigat­ion.

Raymond Mhlaba, a ward councillor in Numbi, told Sowetan that they are happy

Nyalunga was denied bail.

“As the community we are happy the court denied the accused bail. He must reveal the other suspects he was working with so that we do away with crime in our area. We can’t afford to lose tourists passing here to the Kruger because of crime,” Mhlaba said.

“Tourists visiting the park are of benefit to communitie­s along the road to the [Numbi] gate. That road brings jobs for our people... we cannot afford for it to be abandoned by tourists because of crime.”

The future of Numbi Gate remains uncertain following the murder of Schnarr. The SA National Parks, which manages the Kruger, has urged visitors to the park to avoid the road leading to Numbi Gate, pointing to “recent spate of attacks.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa