Accused in Thistle killing in bid for bail

2008-08-07 00:00

The bail application by three men charged with the murder of Thistle Hotel manager Mark Truter (38) on March 25 continued in the Pietermaritzburg Magistrate’s Court yesterday before Paul van Dongen.

One of the four suspects originally charged with Truter’s murder and robbery, Ryder Snothi Ndlovu (21), died of natural causes recently in the prison hospital.

The remaining accused are Wiseman Vusimuzi Ndlovu (30), Siphelele Peter Ngubo (28) and Sihle Makhanya (24).

They are charged with Truter’s murder and the robbery of R33 000 cash, a camera and a cellphone.

Truter — one of the oldest known survivors of cystic fibrosis (an illness that affects the breathing and digestive system) — reportedly suffocated as a result of being gagged with tape.

Wiseman Ndlovu said in his evidence at the bail hearing that he will plead not guilty to the charges and claimed to have been assaulted by police.

He said he was employed at the Golden Horse Casino for seven years until the time of his arrest. Yesterday, when confronted with a letter indicating that he resigned from his job on March 31, 2007 — a year before his arrest — he declined to answer.

The hearing proceeded with evidence by Ngubo, who has offered to pay R2 000 bail.

Ngubo said he owns a tuck shop in France location and is a shareholder in a business that has a contract with the municipality to repair street lights, which generates an income for him of around R15 000 per month. He also takes videos at functions, he said.

Ngubo also alleged that police assaulted him after his arrest by slapping him in the face and kicking him. He was warned by the court on a number of occasions to answer questions simply and directly.

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