Man accused of Bontle Mashiyane's murder released on parole 5 months ago

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Bontle Mashiyane.
Bontle Mashiyane.
  • Police have arrested five people linked to the murder of Bontle Mashiyane whose body was dumped in the bushes.
  • One of the accused, Collen Hlongwane is an ex-convict and paroled twice - back in 2008 and later again in 2016
  • Community members have since retaliated by burning three houses belonging to the accused.

One of the men linked to the murder of a six-year-old Mpumalanga girl was released on parole five months ago for murder. 

Collen Hlongwane, 36, is a former convict who was paroled twice previously - in 2008 and 2016.

According to Correctional Service Department spokesperson Singabakho Nxumalo, Hlongwane was first convicted in 2008 after he was found guilty of attempted murder and possession of a firearm and ammunition.

He was then sentenced to 10-years imprisonment, however, two years later he was granted parole in April 2013, he said. 

READ | Three including ex-convict abandon bail application in case for six-year-old girl's murder

In March 2014, Nxumalo said Hlongwane was convicted for breaking parole conditions when he committed murder.  

He was sentenced to just over three and a half years in prison for breaking parole conditions.

He was also found guilty of  the murder and sentenced to 12 years in 2016.

Nxumalo said:

Hlongwane only served five years in prison before he was released on parole last year [2021] December.

Just five months after his release, Hlongwane was back in court for allegedly being one of the people who murdered Bontle Mashiyane.

He was arrested alongside Thapelo Ngomane, 25, and Ntombi Mgwenya, 40.

The three appeared before the Kabokweni Magistrate's Court on Monday where they abandoned their bail applications.

They face charges of rape, murder, kidnapping, and dealing in human parts.

On Tuesday, Mpumalanga police spokesperson Selvy Mohlala said two more suspects were arrested in connection with Bontle's murder.

He said Samuel Tsela, 63, and his son Philasande Tsela, 28, appeared before the Kabokweni Magistrate's Court on Tuesday morning on charges of kidnapping, rape and murder.

The duo were remanded in custody and was set to join Hlongwane, Ngomane, Mgwenya on 24 June for their next appearance, said Mohlala.

He added:

Community members of Mganduzweni, Mpumalanga have since been angered by what transpired in their neighbourhood which allegedly prompted the action of setting the accused houses on fire.

On Monday night, Mpumalanga police responded to the scene where three houses in Mganduzweni, near Hazyview in Mpumalanga were set alight. 

It is alleged that the houses targeted belonged to those arrested in connection with Bontle's murder.

Mohlala said the reason for the houses being burned down was that community members were upset about Bontle's murder.

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