'Remorseless' killers jailed

2013-06-25 17:07
(Picture: AP)

(Picture: AP)

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Pietermaritzburg - The KwaZulu-Natal High Court in Pietermaritzburg has imposed two life terms each on two men who killed two taxi drivers, tried to kill a third, and stole their cars to sell for parts.

Acting Judge Thoba Poya-Dlwati also sentenced Samkelo Mathews Maphumulo, 32, and Siyaboga Praise God Zimu, 27, to 15 years imprisonment for aggravated robbery and 10 years for attempted murder.

Maphumulo and Zimu murdered Sphamandla Zondi and Zephrid Nxumalo, and tried to murder Xolani Hlela in 2010.

Between May and August 2010, Maphumulo and Zimu, both metered taxi drivers, approached other drivers during the day to obtain their phone numbers.

Later, they would call the drivers, posing as customers looking to hire a taxi, and when the drivers arrived, would hold them at gunpoint.

Zondi and Nxumalo were taken to remote spots where they were shot dead, and their taxis were taken to Durban.

Hlela was shot in the stomach while wrestling with Zimu in the back seat of his taxi.

Zimu dumped him at the side of the road to prevent blood spilling in the taxi.

Hlela was taken to hospital and survived the stomach wound, but died of something else.


Poya-Dlwati said Maphumulo and Zimu were remorseless.

After the first murder and robbery they had plenty of time to reconsider their crimes and desist from the second and third murders.

She found no substantial and compelling circumstances to depart from the prescribed sentences of life for the planned murders and of 15 years jail for three aggravated robberies.

Maphumulo admitted instigating the crimes.

Poya-Dlwati said the interests of society and the need to impose deterrent sentences on violent criminals had come to the fore.

In this case, some of the impacts of the crimes were proven.

A bereaved mother had said a driver was her only child.

A small child was now also fatherless.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg

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