A man accused of hiring two hitmen to kill his wife has denied the charges against him, claiming he only instructed the two men to ‘plant a baboon’s head’ at his matrimonial home to ‘bewitch’ his wife as he feared she was about to leave him.
Ernest Legwale, 43, told the Police that his wife, Dimpho Legwale, had threatened to divorce him but he had hoped to win her back with the baboon head charm.
However, there was a mix-up with the ‘hit’ and the two ‘hired assassins’ killed the wrong woman – Dimpho’s look alike sister Thato Meswele, who was 35.
Legwale and one of the men he is accused of hiring, 47-year-old Zimbabwean national Hamadi Mkhuha – the second hitman is still on the loose – appeared before Broadhurst Magistrates Court on Thursday.
Giving evidence before court, Investigating Officer (IO), Senior Superintendent Sergeant Marapo revealed it had taken the police two years to ‘crack the case’.
Marapo told court that Mkhuha confessed to the murder, admitting that he and another man were each paid P15, 000 as well as a BMW motor vehicle to kill Legwale’s wife.
“Unfortunately they killed the wrong person. We received a report that the unidentified men had assaulted and injured one Thato Meswele with a hard object on the 10th of September 2015 at around 05:00am. She was taken to Marina where she died four days later,” testified Marapo.
The IO further informed court that Legwale was protesting his innocence.
“He told us that he did not hire them to kill his wife, instead he hired them to plant a baboon head at their home, which was to help them reconcile as their marriage was in shambles,” revealed Marapo – a revelation that had most inside the packed court exclaiming in shock.
“Legwale, according to our investigations, also approached a traditional doctor whom he gave a list of other targets. We are yet to interview the traditional doctor,” added the IO.
The case will continue before presiding Magistrate, Faith Ngadu next Thursday.
The two accused were denied bail on the grounds that the matter was still fresh and the Police needed more time to gather evidence.