Community leaders denounce vigilantism

2017-11-02 06:00

EIGHT Burbreeze residents aged between 20 and 40, who were arrested for vigilantism last week, appeared at the Verulam Magistrate’s Court for murder on October 23.

It’s alleged the eight suspects­ killed another resident who was suspected of being a thief on October 20.

Tongaat SAPS spokesperson Captain Patrick Ngwane said the police were alerted about a suspect who had been apprehended at one of the houses in Main Road in Burbreeze.

“When the police arrived at the said place the complainant was interviewed and pointed out a male lying in front of the house. The police noticed the man was lying on the ground naked and was not breathing. The police noticed that there was also a group of people standing around the man. Our members saw the man had injuries on the hip, head and back. The ambulance was called and the man was certified dead. The body was taken to Phoenix government mortuary for a post-mortem.”

Ngwane said a case of murder was opened for investigation and was assigned to Detective Captain Yaka.

“We appeal to our community not take the law into their own hands. We encourage­ our community to join forces with the police by joining sector forums or participating in a CPF or become police reservists.”

CPF executive member Anthony Gumede­ warned the public not to take the law into their own hands.

“In our CPF meetings we always make it crystal clear that vigilantism is a punishable offence. The public can, however, apprehend the suspect and call the police. But the process when apprehending the suspect needs is to be within the framework of the law.”

Ward councillor Zanele Khumalo advised the public to report criminal activities to community forums and the police.

“A forum is the one that has to apprehend the suspect and call the police. It’s totally unacceptable to kill a person based on unfound allegations.”

The suspects were remanded in custody, and will reappear in the Verulam Magistrate’s Court soon.


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