Farmer shot dead for R700, cellphones

2011-02-21 08:03
Bloemfontein - Murdered Free State farmer Helgard Muller, 66, was still breathing when his youngest son, Helgard jnr, found him after he was shot in the head during a robbery on Saturday.

The police and an ambulance were called after the attack but Muller, from the farm Mara in the Frankfort district, died on the way to a hospital in Vereeniging. The attack happened four days after his birthday.

Muller jnr said on Sunday that his mother, Marietjie, who is confined to a wheelchair, and their domestic worker were held up on Saturday morning, gagged and tied up with shoelaces and then left in different rooms.

“They (the robbers) asked my mother for the safe keys and said they wanted money.”

Waiting

Police spokesperson Captain Harry Nagel said the men were armed with a firearm and a stick.

Muller snr had gone to check on his cattle earlier that morning, returning about two hours later.

The robbers were waiting for him. They shot him before fleeing in his Isuzu bakkie with R700 and cellphones which they had stolen.

The domestic worker managed to free herself and Mrs Muller.

Muller jnr said he had been adjusting the irrigation, and as he got close to the house, the domestic worker called him. He found his father in the passage of the farmstead.

Free State Agriculture (FSA) contingency plan was activated, and the organisation’s intelligence service worked with farmers and the police to find the suspected murderers.

Three arrested


The bakkie was found deserted on a gravel road near Frankfort and two men, aged 19 and 32, both from Orangeville, and a 25-year-old woman from Frankfort were arrested.

The police found the revolver with which Muller was allegedly shot in the young woman’s house.

“I don’t have the words to describe how I feel,” an emotional Muller jnr said.

“You won’t find a better guy. He wouldn’t walk past a single person without greeting them.”

According to Muller jnr, there was nothing his father wouldn’t have done for his children. His workers also loved him and are in shock over his death.

Nagel said the suspects will appear in the magistrate’s court in Frankfort on Monday.

Read more on:    bloemfontein  |  farm attacks
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