Farm murder: Westville prison again fails to send accused trio

2010-11-09 00:00

TWO men appeared briefly in the high court in Pietermaritzburg yesterday in connection with the murder of Rietvlei farmer Alan Rowe on May 13, last year, but Westville Prison allegedly failed to send three of their co-accused to court by for the second time yesterday.

The court was told a police officer had gone to fetch them.

KwaZulu-Natal Judge President Herbert Msimang expressed his displeasure and said he intended to get answers from the prison authorities about the matter.

The case was provisionally adjourned until today.

The two accused who appeared in court yesterday, Zakhele Ndlela (31) and Zwelibuyile Mhlongo (30), are being detained in Pietermaritzburg.

The other three accused, who are being held at Westville, are Mbuso Mabaso (19), Musawakhe Khumalo (25) and Goodenough Ngiba.

The state alleges that the accused conspired with a former employee of Rowe, Sibonelo Duma, to rob the farmer of cash and property.

On the evening of Wednesday, May 13, 2009, they armed themselves and proceeded to Rowe’s farm, Bloemendal, to carry out their plan. On arrival they hid inside and waited for Rowe, who drove into the premises and alighted.

“He became aware of the presence of the assailants and went back to his vehicle. The assailants then opened fire on the deceased. He attempted to flee, but was fatally injured,” the indictment states.

After the shooting the accused allegedly abandoned the robbery plan and fled the scene.

Rowe died as a result of gunshots to his lung and heart.

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