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Court dismisses convicted cab driver killers’ appeal

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TO HANG: Boikanyo and Mabiletsa face the noose

The Court of Appeal has dismissed Matshidiso Boikanyo and Moabi Mabiletsa’s death sentence appeal following a murder conviction for killing cab driver, Vincent Mopipi.

The two were sentenced to death by Justice Maruping Dibotelo in 2017.

The duo was convicted by the High Court for the murder of a Delux cab driver, Mopipi, by stabbing him 44 times with a knife on the 13th of September 2013 in Gaborone’s Block 9 location.

Investigations revealed that Matshidiso Boikanyo had arranged for the cab to collect him from Tlokweng to University of Botswana by a phone call.

The trial court established that he changed his destination from UB to Block 9 where he jointly, in concert with Mabiletsa, murdered Mopipi.

The court found out that the knife that was used to stab the deceased was found in a room occupied by Mabiletsa and his girlfriend.

Mabiletsa claimed he did not leave his house on that fateful night yet his girlfriend told the investigating officers that he came back after midnight.

Evidence from Mascom indicated that the number that called the transport office was that of Boikanyo.

During arrest the investigating officers found Boikanyo in possession of the phone and the sim-card which he admitted they belong to him.

“There is no rational basis for holding that Mabiletsa parted with the deceased at Block 9 and then Mopipi met with Mabiletsa who murdered him.

Boikanyo’s claims that the deceased might have picked the murderer after dropping him off were rejected as false because he previously mentioned that he had lent someone a phone to call the cab,” ruled the appeals court.

There was no evidence that the two knew each other even though both of them originate from Tlokweng.

Their attorneys argued that there could have been no common purpose to commit such crime.

“There is no requirement at law that persons should know each other for them to form a common purpose. The motive for the murder of the deceased has not been established and it is not a legal requirement that it should be done in order to convict a person. What is required is that all the elements of the offences should be established before a guilty verdict can be returned. The appeal by these two is dismissed,” explained the court.