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Suspected cop killers’ trial begins

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IN COURT: One of the suspects in the dock

The trial of six suspected armed robbers who allegeddly killed a police officer and a suspect in a shoot out in 2015, began today before Justice Zein Kebonang.

Four of the accused, 47- year- old unemployed Evans Mhiwatiwa of Zimbabwe, security guard Gaofenngwe Lovy Seitiso, 39, of Mmopa ward in Kanye, unemployed Thuso Moses Tankomane 33, and an illegal immigrant from Zimbabwe, Mayibongwe Moyo appeared in court on Tuesday for an appointment of an attorney to represent one of the suspects in the matter. The other had three already engaged legal representation.

They are facing nine counts of criminal offences related to the armed robbery of a micro lender or cash-loan in Kanye village in which they are said to have made away with a sum of P87 064.00, a Samsung laptop and a Toyota Allex worth P40 000.00.

They are further alleged to have robbed the cash-loan employees of their mobile phones and used two guns to overcome resistance.

“The four accused persons and two others not before court, on January, 29th, 2015, at or near Mmakgodumo dam in Kanye village in the Southern Administrative District, being persons not exempted to posses fire arms had in their possession a Bernadelli-Cardone pistol and star pistol without arms licences issued under the act and ammunition,” the charge reads in part.

When the police caught up with the alleged suspects near Mmakgodumo dam, just outside the residential area of Kanye village, following the robbery, a shoot-out ensued and a 30 year old constable Isaiah Focus was injured and died the following day in hospital. One suspect was shot dead during the confrontation. The police have since recovered more than P73 000 of the stolen money.