- Nthutuko Shoba was found guilty of the murder of his heavily pregnant girlfriend Tshegofatso Pule.
- The judge said the facts pointed in one direction, that Shoba arranged for Muzikayise Malephane to kill Pule.
- Police Minister Bheki Cele says the next step is for the court to hand Shoba an appropriate sentence to bring some comfort and justice to the Pule family.
Ntuthuko Shoba has been found guilty of the murder of Tshegofatso Pule, the mother of his unborn child.
However, Shoba was found not guilty of defeating the ends of justice.
The verdict comes nearly two years after the brutal murder of 28-year-old Pule on 4 June 2020.
She was shot in Noordgesig and her heavily pregnant body was found hanging from a tree in Durban Deep, Roodepoort.
Muzikayise Malephane was arrested two weeks after the murder and then entered into a plea agreement with the State.
He pleaded guilty to the murder and said he had been hired by Shoba to kill Pule.
Shoba was later arrested. Malephane - who had turned State witness - testified during Shoba's trial that the former JSE analyst had contracted him to murder Pule because "he did not want his wife to find out about the pregnancy".
Handing down judgment in the Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg on Friday, Acting Judge Stuart Wilson said that "the facts that have been proved all point in one direction, that Shoba arranged [Muzikayise] Malephane to kill Pule".
Police Minister General Bheki Cele congratulated the detectives who worked on the case, saying the conviction must serve as a reminder for all police officers to always prioritise GBVF. He said it was vigorous dedicated detective work that had led to the guilty verdict.
"Police investigations have ensured that all bases were covered and a water tight case was presented before the courts. Eventually, evidence was put out for the world to see that Tshegofatso was murdered by a hired gun.
"Ntuthuko Shoba plotted to not only kill his girlfriend ,but also his unborn child. The next step is for the courts to hand this heartless man an appropriate sentence that we hope, can bring some comfort and justice to the Pule family," said Cele.
NotInMyName's Themba Masango also welcomed the judgement and applauded "all those who were involved in making sure that this case finally gets to this clear guilty verdict".
"We look forward to the sentencing and want to state that, nothing less than a life sentence will be acceptable," Masango said after the verdict.
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