Driver pleads not guilty to 24 counts of murder

2013-11-06 23:10


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

Mbombela - A driver charged with the deaths of 24 farmworkers when his truck collided with a goods train in Mpumalanga denied guilt on Wednesday.

George Mandlazi, 33, was asked to plead to 24 counts of murder, one of negligence, and another of reckless driving when he appeared in the Nelspruit Circuit of the High Court in Pretoria, a Sapa correspondent reported.

"I have not killed anyone. I plead not guilty," said Mandlazi.

His lawyer Melanie Erasmus asked the court to postpone the matter to 11 November for Mandlazi to file an explanation of plea.

"I’m asking the honourable court to not ask why the accused pleads not guilty and to postpone the trial to 11 November so we can file an explanation of the plea which my client just made," she said.

Judge Nomsa Khumalo granted the postponement.

Mandlazi is out on bail of R3 000.

He was driving the truck when it collided with a coal train between Hectorspruit and Malalane on 13 July last year.

He was initially charged with culpable homicide, and then murder.

The charges were reduced to culpable homicide during his first court appearance, but were later changed back to murder.

Nineteen people died on the scene of the accident, and five others died in hospital or on their way to hospital.

Mandlazi was rumoured to be dead after a nurse found him unconscious, but he had fainted after being told how many people died in the accident.

Read more on:    mbombela  |  accidents

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. 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
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Financial advisors – Do you need one and should you get one?

The good, the bad, and everything else you need to know when considering hiring a financial advisor.


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
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 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.