Advocate shot dead at petrol station in Cape Town

Advocate Vernon Jantjies (Vernon Jantjies/Facebook)
Advocate Vernon Jantjies (Vernon Jantjies/Facebook)

A Cape Town lawyer was shot dead in an apparent hit at a petrol station in Mitchells Plain over the weekend.

Advocate Vernon Jantjies, who was born in Gelvandale, Port Elizabeth, had served as a magistrate in the Khayelitsha Magistrate's Court several years ago.

Western Cape police did not identify Jantjies, but said a 54-year-old man, "who previously worked for the Department of Justice in the Khayelitsha area", was shot dead in Lentegeur around 21:40 on Sunday.

Brigadier Novela Potelwa said he had just stepped out of a shop at a petrol station when several shots were fired at him.

"He died on the scene."

No one has been arrested yet.

His murder follows those of prominent Cape Town advocate Pete Mihalik and attorney Noorudien Hassan.

ALSO READ: Cape Town lawyer shot dead in Khayelitsha

Hassan, who was linked to some of the province’s most high-profile gang cases, was shot in his car outside his home in Lansdowne on November 7, 2016.

Mihalik, who worked closely with Hassan, was shot dead while dropping off his children at Reddam House Atlantic Seaboard School in Green Point, Cape Town, on October 30 last year.

Michael Blignaut, who had known Jantjies for more than 35 years, told News24 on Monday that he was at a loss for words.

The two met while playing for different teams in the local soccer community league in Port Elizabeth.

"We both represented the UWC (University of the Western Cape) football team in the mid 80s, during which we became best friends."

Blignaut said Jantjies' goal in life had been to uplift and educate himself and others in the spirit of patriotism and social responsibility.

Jantjies, who was affectionately known as Vakes by those who knew him as a valued alumnus of UWC, was considered one of the legends of UWC football.

One of his former teammates was current Rector and Vice-Chancellor, Professor Tyrone Pretorius. 

"We owe Vernon a debt of gratitude for his commitment and loyalty to UWC. He was a friend and teammate and one of our football legends who kept football players from different generations united in their ties to UWC. My heart is bleeding and my sincere condolences to his friends and family for the tragic loss," said Prof Pretorius.

Pretorius said this happened as the institution was preparing to host a UWC football alumni event in March 2020, which Jantjies had passionately advocated for.

"It will be a bittersweet homecoming for UWC football legends."

A number of Jantjies' friends and colleagues have posted messages of shock and condolences on social media.

Anyone with information that could assist in the police investigation should contact Crime Stop on 08600 10111.

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