Red Ants security guard on trial for killing man, 61, in argument gets R5 000 bail

Sabelo Dlamini in court. (Jana Marx, Netwerk24)
Sabelo Dlamini in court. (Jana Marx, Netwerk24)

A security guard accused of shooting dead 61-year-old Danie van Heerden was granted bail of R5 000 in the Vereeniging Magistrate's Court on Wednesday, Netwerk24 reported. He will reportedly appear again on February 6.

Sabelo Dlamini, a security guard for the Red Ants, is accused of shooting dead the father of famed International Boxing Organisation world champion, Chris van Heerden, on December 27.

In a video circulated on social media, Van Heerden and Dlamini can be seen arguing, although details around the incident remain unclear.

News24 reported that Van Heerden can be seen in the video taking the keys from the security guard's vehicle, and can be heard saying that he will call the police. The video does not reveal what happened leading up to this.

The suspect is then seen carrying what looks like a firearm, and appears to follow Van Heerden to a vehicle before opening fire.

Van Heerden can be heard saying: "Shoot, I'm [going to] knock you out. Shoot my bakkie."

The suspect then replies and says: "You hijacked me".

Warning shots

According to Netwerk24, Dlamini says he fired warning shots, not intending to kill anyone.

In court, it was reportedly revealed that the State has an underage witness who will testify that the argument started when Van Heerden saw Dlamini and others illegally taking meat from a truck.

When confronted, some of the men involved apparently unloaded the meat and ran away, but Dlamini and Van Heerden argued.

The witness will reportedly say that Dlamini shot at the tyres of Van Heerden's bakkie, before shooting the victim.

Dlamini reportedly said in his witness statement that Van Heerden had screamed at him and threatened to hurt him, and took his car keys away before walking to his own vehicle.

It was then that the security guard fired warning shots, he says.

Thomas Mahlobogoane, representing Dlamini on Wednesday, reportedly said the security guard had been married for 20 years, had three children between the ages of 12 and 19 who lived with him, and was the sole breadwinner in his family.

He said that Dlamini had no previous convictions. The Red Ants have reportedly fired Dlamini, but he was still being supported financially by the company.

Regional Court Magistrate Retha Willemse reportedly said that Dlamini did not appear to be a hardened criminal, that he was "stable", owned property, was a "family man", and that it appeared that the shooting was an isolated incident.

Willemse reportedly said there were no obvious reasons why Dlamini would try to interfere with the investigation if he was released on bail.

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