Bodyguards in court for shooting in air at funeral

2018-04-13 16:15
One of the three bodyguards attached to the Taxi Violence Unit VIP Protection private firm, who were caught on video brandishing firearms and firing shots in the air.

One of the three bodyguards attached to the Taxi Violence Unit VIP Protection private firm, who were caught on video brandishing firearms and firing shots in the air. (Screenshot)

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Three bodyguards attached to the Taxi Violence Unit VIP Protection private firm, who were caught on video brandishing firearms and firing shots in the air, have handed themselves over to the police.

KZN provincial police spokesperson Lieutenant-Colonel Thulani Zwane said the trio handed themselves in at the Hillcrest police station on Thursday morning.

“Their firearms — suspected to be used during the shooting — were taken from them for ballistic tests,” added Zwane.

The three men have been charged with discharging firearms in public.

They are expected to appear at the Pinetown Magistrate’s Court on Friday.

The 30-seconds-long cellphone video footage, which has since gone viral on social media, is believed to have been taken at the weekend.

According to information received by The Witness,the video was filmed in the Molweni area, near Hillcrest on Saturday after a funeral service of a taxi owner belonging to the Wyebank Molweni Taxi Association.

In the video, the men are seen firing multiple shots in the air amid loud cheers from onlookers. No one was injured during the shooting.

Taxi Violence Unit director Warren Julie said the three were acting in their private and individual capacity without the knowledge of the firm.

“The firearms used were their own private guns and the use of the motor vehicle at that time of day was unauthorised,” said Julie.

He said the company was also doing internal investigatings on the matter.

Meanwhile, South African National Taxi Association (Santaco) provincial chairperson Boy Zondi condemned the video as “disturbing”

“Under no circumstances are any persons allowed to discharge firearms in public. That applies to people within the taxi industry as well. We all need to adhere to what the law says,” said Zondi.

He said Santaco will also investigate the matter.

The incident comes after Police Minister Bheki Cele issued a stern warning against the practice of randomly shooting in the air, after a series of shots were fired outside the home of the late Winnie Madikizela-Mandela last Friday.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  shooting

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