- Three men were handed stiff sentences for the murder of an alleged Hard Livings gangster.
- They accepted plea and sentencing agreements for their role in avenging the death of a Vikings gang leader, and were given sentences of 30 years, 25 years and 18 years.
- A fourth accused's case was postponed to July 2023.
One of the men arrested for the murder of an alleged gangster in Kenilworth, Cape Town, was sentenced to 30 years' imprisonment in the Western Cape High Court on Monday.
Thirty-two-year-old Keagan van Rooi will be 62 when he has served his whole sentence, if he is not granted parole.
Van Rooi, Jeremy van Wyk and Jevon Loggenstein all pleaded guilty on Monday for their part in the murder of Ebrahim Ismail, who they blamed for the murder of Shafiek "Fiekie Viking" Meyer in March 2019.
Meyer was shot dead outside a mosque in Hazendal in the Athlone area. Van Rooi and Van Wyk said in their explanation that they held Ismail responsible for Meyer's murder, and decided to kill him.
Ismail was shot 28 times at a Caltex service station on Doncaster Street in Kenilworth on 9 April 2019, while he waited for anti-freeze to be poured into the blue BMW he had borrowed from his aunt.
A fourth accused, Ricardo de Kock, was also in the dock, but his matter was postponed to 26 July 2023.
Van Rooi and Van Wyk said in a plea and sentencing agreement reached between the defence and the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) that they were members of a gang called the Vikings that operated in Athlone, Manenberg, Bishop Lavis and Mitchells Plain.
They were constantly at odds with the Hard Livings gang, which they said Ismail was a leader of, and so when "Fiekie Viking" was killed, they decided to kill Ismail.
Loggenstein said he was not a gang member and did not shoot. He was just the getaway driver.
On 9 April 2019, they got word that Ismail was seen driving around Kenilworth, so they called Loggenstein, who got into the driver's seat of a gold Avanza that had been reported stolen. Loggenstein said the keys were in the car, and he drove the men to look for Ismail in Kenilworth.
CCTV footage shows the Avanza parking at the side of the Caltex garage, and three men getting out and shooting at Ismail in the car. The petrol attendant fetching the anti-freeze and everyone else at the garage scatter as the bullets fly. The three got back into the car, and Loggenstein put his foot down to get them all away.
With the help of the CCTV and eyewitnesses, police launched a manhunt for them. They were spotted by a K9 unit, which gave chase.
Loggenstein admitted that he ignored the police as he tried to get away from them, driving fast and through red robots.
Eventually, two of the Avanza's tyres were shot flat by the police in Goodwood, and the four were arrested.
Two guns were recovered - a Glock and a Ruger - as well as ammunition and an extra magazine. Based on the cartridges left at the scene, a third gun was also used, which is understood to have been thrown away during the police chase.
Van Rooi and Van Wyk tested positive for gunshot residue, but Loggestein, the driver, did not.
Standing in a row in Nike sportswear, the three each pleaded guilty and confirmed that the contents of the statements were correct.
Judge Selwyn Hockey noted that their backgrounds revealed they had difficult and unsettled childhoods.
Van Rooi left school in Grade 7, because his divorced mother struggled to support two children without any help from their father. He started using drugs and battled to hold down a job. He had already been convicted of theft and robbery before the murder.
Van Wyk left school in Grade 10 with a similar background as Van Rooi and was also unable to keep a job, so he turned to "piece jobs".
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For Loggenstein, stability only came when he moved in with his uncle and was sent to a school which could accommodate his learning disability. He was an assistant mechanic at the Chevron oil refinery in Milnerton at the time of his arrest.
The State said although the accused saved Ismail's family and witnesses the trauma of testifying, harsh sentences were needed in the interests of the community.
Van Rooi got 30 years for murder, 10 years for unlawful possession of a firearm, and five years for unlawful possession of ammunition.
Van Wyk got 18 years for murder, five years for unlawful possession of a firearm, and five years for unlawful possession of ammunition.
Loggenstein got a hefty 25 years for murder, one year for reckless driving, and one year for resisting arrest. It was his first offence.
The State withdrew charges that related specifically to belonging to a gang, or participating in gang activity, against all of them.