Bail for shop employees accused of assaulting woman

2013-04-22 16:34

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Three Jane Furse shop workers accused of assaulting a suspected shoplifter have been granted bail of R2 000 each by the Nebo Magistrates’ Court, in Limpopo.

Gladys Maphanga, Refilwe Mzimba, and Thabanga Makuwa were arrested last week after allegedly assaulting Esther Mankge (49), accusing her of stealing underwear from a clothing shop.

Their co-accused, Matthew Makofane and Maria Mahlaela, were released on bail of R500 each earlier.

But Maphanga, Mzimba, and Makuwa initially remained in custody while the court gathered more information about them after it emerged they were not first-time offenders.

Five clothing shop employees are seen on a cellphone video clip beating Mankge with a rubber hammer and kicking her while she screams and begs for mercy. The clip was distributed, prompting a search for the victim, and arrests, which was why a case was opened only six months later, police said.

The Congress of SA Trade Unions and the ANC Women’s League protested outside court today, calling for a sentence which would act as a deterrent and send the message that people should not take the law into their own hands.

The case was postponed to June 25 for further investigation.

Mankge refuse to comment on the bail ruling, but thanked the protesters for their support.

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