Murdered midlands couple identified

2009-06-19 00:00

THE couple whose charred bodies were discovered in thick bush on Beverley Farm at Dargle have been identified as Alan O’Neale (57) and Hannetjie Blom (40).

O’Neale and Blom were recently married and lived in Merrivale.

According to police spokesman Senior Superintendent Henry Budhram, the police are following leads and will make arrests soon. “Investigations are progressing very well and arrests are imminent. [The] motive would appear to be revenge-related; however, this is being investigated. The couple were attacked at their home and strangled to death before being dumped and set alight.”

Although O’Neale’s face was burnt beyond recognition, Blom’s face could be identified.

A youngster stumbled upon the still smouldering bodies of O’Neale and Blom on Tuesday morning.

O’Neale and Blom’s grisly killing follows a string of similar murders in recent months: the charred body of Sandesh Poorun (27) was found on the side of the road at Cramond, Professor Samuel Zondi (71) was tortured and burnt in his flat in Alexandra Road and estate agent Lynn Hume was burnt beyond recognition on the passenger seat of her own car in the Free State. Two other bodies were found inside an old, empty cottage on Ntuzuma Primary School’s property in Durban.

In most, if not all of these cases, the police have been successful in bringing the killers to justice, despite their apparent hope that burning the bodies would frustrate detectives.

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