One of the alleged murderers of a well-known Captain of the Hawks, Qeya Jonas Tshabalala (52), remains behind bars after his application for bail in the Bloemfontein Magistrate’s Court failed.
The accused, Ratebeko Simon Masiu (30), a citizen of Lesotho, reappeared in court on Thursday (17/10) to apply for bail again.
He is on trial regarding the robbery and murder of Tshabalala, who was shot and killed on 24 May last year at a house in Rocklands in Bloemfontein.
Magistrate Ryan Ishmail said he could not find reasonable conditions why Masiu should be released on bail.
Ishmail found that the state had a strong case against Masiu.
It emerged in court that Masiu was in South Africa illegally.
Not only was his cellphone and blood stains found on the scene, but his blood was also found in the stolen state vehicle that Tshabalala was using and on the wheelchair of the National Hospital in Bloemfontein and also in the meter taxi which he and his companions had hired to flee to Lesotho.
Ishmail said although Masiu was always asking for forgiveness in his bail application, he gave no explanation at all how the DNA forensics linked him with the murder of Tshabalala.
He said Masiu had lied under oath, saying that he had no pending cases against him, and during his arrest he gave a false name to the police.
“You do this just so the police can’t track your crime history. Masiu did it on purpose so the police cannot link him to his six other cases,” said Ishmail.
He found Masiu a flight risk who would not attend his hearing.
“He admitted in court that he was illegally crossing the border.”
Ishmail said it was in the interest of justice that he remained in custody.
His trial was postponed until next month.
John de Vries was the prosecutor and Ndou Tsireledzo represented Masiu.
- Masiu’s co-accused, Sprinkaan Maema (34), was in May this year sentenced in the Bloemfontein High Court to a total of 33 years in prison for the murder and robbery. He must serve 20 years of the sentence effectively.