Stolen antique gramophone takes centre stage in murder trial

2017-02-15 13:58
Murdered Midrand marketing and advertising consultant Thabo Seutloadi. (Supplied)

Murdered Midrand marketing and advertising consultant Thabo Seutloadi. (Supplied)

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Johannesburg – A stolen antique gramophone took centre stage on Tuesday in the murder trial of two men accused of killing a Midrand marketing and advertising consultant.

The body of Thabo Seutloadi, 42, was found in the bath at his home on September 3, 2014, Netwerk24 reported.

Two men, Lucky Ratabane, 38, and Moses Nxumalo, 35, are facing charges of murder, robbery with aggravating circumstances and malicious damage to property in the High Court in Johannesburg. They have pleaded not guilty.

They were arrested on September 29, 2015.

According to the charge sheet, Seutloadi died on September 2, 2014. He had fought back when the suspects tied his hands and feet with wire hangers and cables, the charge sheet reads.

"The suspects also tied wire and cords around the victim's neck."

Seutloadi was left in the bath while his attackers loaded their loot into a car. It included an antique gramophone, two TVs, a sound system, an iPad, an iPod and a MacBook computer.

The suspects had apparently left the items at a "safe place" and set fire to the car.

Girlfriend accused of payback

Although the gramophone, which Seutloadi had bought in India, was never found, Ratabane's ex-girlfriend testified that she'd seen it and a "slim TV" in his room in September or October 2014.

Alice Molefe, 26, testified that she and Ratabane had been in a relationship between 2012 and September 2014. They have a 4-year-old child together.

She said Ratabane had lost his job midway through 2014 and all of a sudden he had a TV set and an antique gramophone in his room.

She knew he hadn't bought them because there were no boxes. Ratabane "normally keeps the boxes when he buys something new".

Ratabane's lawyer, Advocate Johan Wiehahn, kept coming back to the dates and said: "You couldn't have seen the items, because my client says you ended the relationship in January 2014."

However, she stuck to September 2014.

Wiehahn also said Molefe was testifying against Ratabane because he had cheated on her, but she denied this.

The case continues.

Read more on:    johannesburg  |  crime

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