Farm attack convict testifies

2011-09-09 00:00

A MAN who is serving an effective 20 years in jail for his part in a brutal attack on elderly Richmond farm couple Anthony and Caroline Morris on November 29, 2009, gave evidence in the high court in Pietermaritzburg yesterday against the two men on trial in connection with the incident.

The couple survived the attack.

The state witness, Bongumusa Mbanjwa, pleaded guilty shortly after his arrest in December 2009.

He told Judge Esther Steyn and an assessor yesterday that the two accused, Bhani Dlamini (25) and Skhumbuzo Sithole (23), were his accomplices and said the three of them shared the spoils of the robbery.

Mbanjwa received R3 000 cash, but could not say how much the others got.

Dlamini and Sithole also took a shotgun and a .38 special revolver.

Mbanjwa said Dlamini and Sithole stabbed the couple and he held Anthony Morris by his throat. Later he tied his hands and feet of the couple with a rope he had brought to the farm. He also fastened Anthony Morris’s hands with handcuffs they found in the house on Sithole’s instructions.

Mbanjwa testified that Morris put up a struggle.

He said he suffered a severe stab wound to his hand when Dlamini accidentally injured him while he was stabbing Anthony Morris in the neck.

He testified that all three of them had knives when they entered the farmhouse by breaking a window.

He and Dlamini wore balaclavas, but Sithole did not cover his face, saying he “didn’t care”.

They followed the sounds of the couple’s snoring to lead them to the bedroom and attacked them as they lay sleeping.

Mbanjwa said he grabbed Morris by his neck and as he did so Sithole went to Caroline Morris and stabbed her.

“The person I grabbed was struggling and when Bhani [Dlamini] saw that this person was starting to beat me he then stabbed him.”

Mbanjwa said that at one stage he “felt sorry” for the couple when he saw their bloodied state.

After taking firearms and money the trio left in the Morrises’ Mercedes Benz but they were unable to get away because the farm gate was locked and they could not find the key. They then abandoned it.

ingrido@witness.co.za

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