3 friends found shot dead in KZN

2011-05-19 10:17
Crowds gather at the Northdale, Pietermaritzburg house where three friends were shot dead. (Shan Pillay, The Witness)

Crowds gather at the Northdale, Pietermaritzburg house where three friends were shot dead. (Shan Pillay, The Witness)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories


Pietermaritzburg - Shock was etched on the faces of the crowd that gathered outside a Northdale house where three friends were shot dead execution-style in the head on Wednesday afternoon.

Jeff Pillay, 45, who was identified as the homeowner, was found along with Merl Maistry, 44, and Musa Ndlovu, 35.

The murder weapon was found discarded under a table in the lounge where all the victims were shot while apparently drinking beer together.

Police spokesperson, Warrant Officer Joey Jeevan, said the firearm was a 9mm pistol from which the serial number had been filed off.

Two men were taken in for questioning by police in the wake of the shooting, but investigators said they are still trying to piece together what happened and emphasised the two were not detained as suspects at this stage.


The shooting may also have been witnessed by a 6-year-old boy who fled from the scene, and who was being cared for by relatives until police were able to interview him.

Bystanders said they were unsure if the child saw the actual shooting or was outside the house when the shots went off.

The distraught boy fled the scene and took refuge with family members living close by immediately after the shooting.

Maistry’s grieving mother sobbed bitterly on the street outside as family and friends tried without success to comfort her and police kept all onlookers at bay, explaining that forensic experts were still busy combing the crime scene for clues.

Pillay’s two brothers, Stanley and Basil, said they had no idea at all what had happened as they had just arrived at the scene.

“Jeff was not a violent man. He never did anybody any harm, so I don’t know why this should happen to him,” Basil Pillay said.

The brothers said Pillay was divorced with two children, and was unemployed at the time of his death. One of his sons arrived at the murder scene and broke down when he was told what had happened to his father.

He tried to run up the stairs to the house and had to be held back.

Maistry was also a divorcee, The Witness was told.

Three gunshots

Neighbours, who did not want to be named, said they heard three gunshots which “sounded like firecrackers” go off at about 15:30.

A friend who regularly drank with the three victims said they were “all just friends”.

He said he had arrived at the house to visit and when he entered he saw the bodies.

He bent down to Maistry, who lay closest to the doorway on the floor, saw blood and realised she was dead. “The other two were still breathing, I think,” he said.

He ran next door to call the neighbours and at that point police pulled up at the scene, he said.

Police described the scene as “very gruesome, with a lot of blood” and confirmed that all three victims were shot in the head. Maistry and Ndlovu lay on the floor while Pillay was on a couch. All three bodies were close to one another.

The station commander of Mountain Rise, Brigadier Francis Bantham, said the shooting was tragic and expressed condolences to all the families and friends of those who died.

“We have our best investigators working on this,” she added.

Police were called away from voting stations where they were deployed to help at the murder scene.

Anyone with information that can assist the police in their investigations can call Colonel Chris Wiles on 079?500?1306.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Inside News24


'Zuma's legacy will be judged by Nkandla'

The legacy of President Jacob Zuma is contingent on how he deals with the issue of upgrades to his Nkandla homestead, says Cape Town Archbishop Thabo Makgoba.


Latest elections multimedia

Why Jack Parow wants you to vote on 7 May
The ad the SABC doesn't want to air
Elections 2014 in one cartoon
This year's election posters
  • Thursday Sir Lowry's Pass - 05:35 AM
    Road name: Old Sir Lowrys Pass Road
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Bezweni Road
  • Thursday Cape Town - 05:35 AM
    Road name: Buitengracht Street
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Waterkant Street
More traffic reports...

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Get many eggs in one basket!

Gaming bundles: 2 Super Hits games for R99, 3 Disney games for R99 and more + exclusive accessory bundles only available on kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Up to 25% off electronics

Buy top electronics and save up to 25%. Such as kalahari.com’s 1# selling product the gobii eReader, Patriot X Porter flash drive, Asus Nexus 7” 3G tablet, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Lenovo G580 Notebook and many more. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off appliances & homeware

Save up to 30% on appliances and homeware this Easter! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Canon EOS 600D

The Canon EOS 600D Digital Camera puts the widely respected...

From R5389.95

I'm shopping for:


Self-indulgence may be strong today. You may want to enjoy yourself to the fullest and share it with those that make you feel...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.