North West murder accused charged for 'death threats' against witnesses

2018-09-18 14:33
Koos Strydom. (Supplied)

Koos Strydom. (Supplied)

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Amanda Mey and George Janse van Rensburg had been married for a mere four months when she was murdered on June 24, 2014, Netwerk24 reported on Monday.

"Mandie was shot on a Wednesday. We had planned to change her surname that following Monday," an emotional Janse van Rensburg said outside the North West High Court in Mogwase on Monday.

The main accused in the murder case is Koos Strydom. He is also an accused in the disappearance and murder of Joey and Anisha van Niekerk of Mooinooi.

Read: Mooinooi murders: Alleged mastermind’s son, 2 others go free

Janse van Rensburg knows Strydom well.

"Mandie and I dated for four years before getting married. I moved to her smallholding close to Kroondal. Koos visited frequently because he managed a scrapyard on her yard. He wanted to buy half of the smallholding from Mandie," Janse van Rensburg said.

In terms of the indictment, Strydom and Mey entered into a purchase contract and took out life insurance policies "in case something happened" to either of them.

On June 24, 2014, Mey was shot in the head in an apparent farm attack.

The alleged shooter was a 24-year-old Mozambican who had worked for Strydom.

The life insurance policy of R1.8m was paid out to Strydom.

The Mozambican was arrested at the time, but the case was later withdrawn.

Possible witness 'gone, unreachable'

Since then, the Mozambican worker and Strydom were arrested, along with others, in December last year for the murder of the Van Niekerks.

Read more: 4 men in court over disappearance of 2 women

The Mozambican may not be identified because he has not pleaded to a rape charge in the Mooinooi case.

In the Van Niekerk murder case it is alleged that Strydom forced them to sign a purchase contract for their land before they were killed. He was managing a panel-beating business on their smallholding.

Some of the other suspects in the Van Niekerk case have turned State witness and three of them have been placed in a witness-protection programme.

Natasha Coetzer, who had been staying on Mey's smallholding at the time, fled to another province after Mey was killed, apparently out of fear for Strydom.

She had kept in touch with the police and was willing to testify against him.

However, she is now "gone" and "unreachable".

An additional charge of intimidation was added to Strydom's indictment on Monday. In terms of the charge, Strydom allegedly made death threats against possible witnesses between June 24, 2014, and September 8, 2018.

The case was postponed to Tuesday because an Afrikaans interpreter was not available.

Janse van Rensburg said: "I shall be here. We have struggled to get this case going. You don't want to know how I feel at this stage."

Read more on:    mahikeng  |  courts  |  crime

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