'He came across as a decent person' - witness on alleged Limpopo serial killer

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Themba Prince Willard Dube, 36, a Zimbabwean national who is in the country illegally, is standing trial for the murder of seven women, kidnapping, rape, extortion and contravention of the Immigration Act.
Themba Prince Willard Dube, 36, a Zimbabwean national who is in the country illegally, is standing trial for the murder of seven women, kidnapping, rape, extortion and contravention of the Immigration Act.
Russel Molefe, News24
  • Prince Willard Themba Dube faces charges of killing seven women, as well as kidnapping, rape, extortion and being in the country illegally.
  • The Limpopo High Court in Polokwane heard testimony from several witnesses who had met Dube.
  • The sister of one victim identified an item of clothing belonging to her that was found in Dube's rented room.

Alleged Limpopo serial killer, Prince Willard Themba Dube, abandoned his rented room in Seshego, outside Polokwane, without informing the landlord - a few days before police came looking for him.

The police informed the landlord that they were looking for Dube for committing "serious crimes".

Dube, 36, a Zimbabwean national in the country illegally, is standing trial in the Limpopo High Court in Polokwane for the murder of seven women, kidnapping, rape, extortion and contravention of the Immigration Act. 

The bodies of the women were found dumped in different locations around Polokwane between August and October 2021. He allegedly lured the women by promising employment.

On Wednesday, Dube's landlord, Wilhelmina Letsoalo, recalled events from the day he came looking for a room to rent up to her being called for an identification parade.

She said a man, who called himself "Prince", knocked on her door on 8 October 2021.

She rented a room to him and he stayed for about three weeks before he disappeared without informing anyone.

READ | 'The pain piles up': Families angry after alleged Limpopo serial killer's case delayed

Police later came looking and searched his room.

Led by the State prosecutor, Calvin Chauke, she pointed to Dube in the dock as the man who had rented the room.

In bringing Letsoalo to the stand, the State wanted to corroborate evidence by two previous witnesses related to some items belonging to their loved ones, which police had found in his room.

Another witness, Judy Mothapo, testified that the accused rented a room on the same premises as she was renting. She positively identified him in court.

Rose Cholo, the elder sister of slain Andrea Cholo, identified a body warmer in court, which her sister wore the day she disappeared.

The body warmer was found during a search of the accused's rented room.

Rosina Thlako, a street vendor in Polokwane, identified the accused as the person who left with another victim, Jane Letsoalo, the day she disappeared.

READ | 'I'll just have to tell the truth': Alleged Limpopo serial killer goes on trial in Limpopo

"He came across as a decent person. He never appeared as a person who can commit such heinous crimes," Thlako said. 

During cross-examination, the lawyer for the defence, Desmond Nonyane, told some of the witnesses that the accused was going to deny some aspects of their evidence.

Nonyane suggested to the witnesses that they may be mistaken in their identification of the accused.

However, the witnesses insisted they were correct.

The trial continues.


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