Coligny murder accused lose bid to have charges dropped

2018-06-15 17:19
Pieter Doorewaard and Phillip Schutte are accused of killing Matlhomola Jonas Mosweu. (Tiro Ramatlhatse, Gallo Images, Sowetan)

Pieter Doorewaard and Phillip Schutte are accused of killing Matlhomola Jonas Mosweu. (Tiro Ramatlhatse, Gallo Images, Sowetan)

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Two men accused of killing 16-year-old Matlhomola Moshoeu in Coligny last year have lost their bid to have charges against them dropped.

North West High Court Judge Ronnie Hendricks on Friday dismissed their application to be acquitted on charges of murder, intimidation, kidnapping, theft, pointing a firearm and unlawful possession of a firearm and ammunition.  

Hendricks only acquitted the accused on charges of unlawful possession of a firearm and ammunition. 

The decision comes after the court heard arguments from both the defence and the State on Thursday afternoon. 

"I am satisfied with the ruling. The defence may now put the accused on the witness stand or elect not to put them on the stand," State advocate Rapulane Molefe said.

READ: State closes its case in Coligny murder trial

Pieter Doorewaard, 27, and Philip Schutte, 34, are accused of killing Matlhomola in Coligny in April 20, 2017. The pair claimed they had caught the teenager stealing a sunflower on April 20, 2017.

Doorewaard and Schutte said they had intended to drive him to the local police station, but that he jumped off their bakkie along the way and broke his neck. 

A key witness had previously told the High Court how he witnessed Matlhomola being thrown from a moving vehicle.

He broke down and lost his composure as he relived the incident.

Bonakele Pakisi, who is the only person who claims to have seen the incident, said on that day he heard gunshots coming from the sunflower field.

He also claimed that he heard Matlhomola crying and screaming: "Mama help, I am dying."

Read: Coligny trial: Key witness says slain teenager pleaded for his life

Pakisi said he saw the accused assaulting Matlhomola and then pushing him from a moving vehicle. He said when the accused saw him, they apparently asked him what he had seen.

"I told them I saw nothing," he testified.

Pakisi also alleged that the accused drove him around with Matlhomola, who was severely injured.

"He (Matlhomola) was injured on the face. He was bleeding through his mouth, nose and ears. I couldn't speak to him because I was told to lie down," he said.

Matlhomola's death sparked protests in the area, with some residents saying he was killed because he was black.

Several houses and businesses were burnt to the ground.

Doorewaard and Schutte are out on R5 000 bail each.

The matter was postponed to Monday for the defence to present its case.  

Read more on:    matlhomola moshoeu  |  coligny  |  mahikeng

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