17 suspects appear in North West court for alleged vigilante attack that claimed two lives

Seventeen men appeared in the North West High Court on Tuesday in connection with a 2018 vigilante attack in which two men were killed.

The 17 men also face four attempted murder charges in connection with the incident, which took place on 19 September 2018.

The accused, who are believed to be taxi operators in Boitumelo, near Bloemhof allegedly forcibly took six people to the Boitumelo taxi rank and used spades, pangas, sjamboks and sticks to assault them.

“The six were allegedly criminals belonging to a criminal gang known as SVK, notorious for terrorising the community for a long period, and some of them [were] facing criminal charges.

The taxi operators then took it upon themselves to deal with these alleged criminals by taking the law into their own hands, ” National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson Henry Mamothame said.

Mooketsi Mogapi, 33, died at the scene and Teboho Thoo, 21, died in hospital four days later.

Shadrack Mokonyane, France Watkins, Kashiso Mahashe and Thabang Leepile were severely injured but survived the attack.

Kalakgosi also provisionally withdrew a case against one of the accused, who is a minor. His matter will be sent back to the regional court for a preliminary enquiry to be conducted in terms of the Child Justice Act.

The other twelve accused Mohau Motswana, 43; Olebogeng Ndlovu, 28; Ivan Leonard, 31; Mxholeli Bongola, 41; Poliri Mohlolo, 26; Isaac Ndlovu, 29; Ishmael Ngubane, 29; Nkululeko Nkencele, 48; James Qankase, 36; Jeremah Bonokwane, 20; Boitumelo Magage, 25; and Daniel Qangase, 50 pleaded not guilty to all six charges against them.

Mokonyane also testified that the accused told him his friend was dead and he would also be killed.

The matter will continue on Wednesday.

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