NATIONAL NEWS - The acting provincial commissioner of the South African Police Service (SAPS) in Limpopo Major General Samuel Manala commended the team of detectives who nabbed the suspects for the work well done.
Police spokesperson Colonel Moatshe Ngoepe said a multidisciplinary task team comprising of Groblesdal Cluster Crime Intelligence Unit and K9 Unit, the SAPS Dennilton Crime Information Analysis Centre (CIMAC), Tekkie Squad and the detectives had conducted a sting joint operation which led to the arrest of the eight suspects.
They said the suspects were arrested in the early hours of Sunday morning at Mpheleng and Naganeng villages outside Groblesdal.
According to police, the suspects were positively linked with the kidnapping, killing and burning of three people, whose bodies were recently discovered burnt beyond recognition in the bushes outside Groblersdal.
Ngoepe said the arrest was a sequel of an incident that took place on 15 March at about 11am. He added that the badly burnt bodies were found in the bush around Naganeng village in the Dennilton policing area outside Groblesdal.
“Police were informed by a passerby and immediately attended to the scene jointly with the medical emergency services. Upon arrival, they discovered the bodies of these three men burnt beyond recognition snd a burnt-out Hyundai truck parked and abandoned next to the bodies.”
The spokesperson added that upon investigation, it was found that the deceased were severely assaulted before they were burnt. This, he said, was because the bodies were found surrounded by several stones, which indicated that they were stoned before they were killed.
“Police have opened three counts of murder and the motive behind this brutal killing is still the subject of ongoing police investigations, but mob justice may not be ruled out.”
Ngoepe identified the deceased as Owen Ncube, 31, Salos Sithole, 23 and Lovemore Basera, 20.
The suspects will appear before the Mdutjana Magistrate’s Court soon.