Bail sought in boiled heart case

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Durban - A Lesotho national accused of chopping up two people and boiling the heart of one of them applied for bail in the Durban Magistrate's Court on Thursday.

Lehlohonolo Joseph Scott, 26, is charged with two counts of murder and one of escaping from custody in Lesotho. He faces extradition to Lesotho.

His lawyer Shameer Goolabjith asked the court for the bail application to be postponed while it was determined if Scott was a South African citizen.

Prosecutor Blackie Swart said when Scott was arrested on April 6, he had a fraudulently obtained South African identity document.

However, Goolabjith argued his client had a South African birth certificate. Magistrate Vanitha Armu postponed the bail hearing to May 15.

According to an affidavit by Lesotho Director of Public Prosecutions Leaba Thetsane, read to the court by Swart, Scott, along with his mother Malehlohono Scott, is charged with the murders of Moholobela Seetsa, 13, and Kamohelo Mohata, 22.

According to the affidavit Seetsa was cycling on January 11, 2012. He never returned to his home in Koalabata village. Various body parts were found in a ditch a few days after he was reported missing.

Mohata, a first-year student from the same village, disappeared early in July 2012.

After an sms was sent to his parents saying that he had gone to South Africa, police were tipped off about the Scotts' alleged involvement.

When they visited Malehlohono Scott's house, they found two arms and a leg in the back of a Corsa bakkie and testicles behind the seat.

Lehlohonolo Scott allegedly pointed out a knife that was used to stab Mohata, a wire used to strangle Seetsa, and a pot in which Seetsa's heart was apparently boiled.

Police seized several other bloodstained items.

The Scotts were arrested on July 14, 2012. Shortly before Lehlohonolo Scott was due to appear in the Lesotho High Court on August 22, 2012, he escaped. South African police arrested him in Durban as he emerged from a church service on April 6. He had been living in the Chesterville area.

Swart said the arrest was effected under an Interpol arrest warrant.

In Lesotho, a person convicted of premeditated murder, treason, or rape, can be sentenced to death. In the case of rape, the death sentence is only applicable if the rapist committed the crime knowing he was HIV positive.

According to the World Coalition Against the Death Penalty the last known execution took place in 1995.

However, Swart said Lesotho's justice minister had given an undertaking that in the event a death sentence was handed down, it would not be carried out.

The murder trial in the Lesotho High Court was expected to proceed on June 6 pending the outcome of the extradition proceedings, which would only proceed once the bail hearing is completed.

Sapa


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