The Commission on Gender Equality has slammed the police and the Department of Justice for not doing their best to solve homophobic crimes.
The Star reported recently on the striking similarity in the murders of four gay men. And in the wake of the commission’s condemnation of the violence against the gay community, The Star has also been alerted to a fifth murder that bears similarities to the other cases.
The commission has said it was concerned about lengthy delays in cases relating to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) issues.
It said full investigations needed to be conducted, especially into the murders mentioned in The Star’s report.
The commission’s spokesman, Javu Baloyi, said there was outrage in the commission after The Star reported on the four murders.
“Cases of this nature are not taken seriously by the police or the justice department,” he said.
“It is our firm belief that the Department of Constitutional Development and Justice has to come to the party in ensuring that the plight of LGBT (and intersexed) people (receive the necessary attention and investigation),” he added.
All four victims mentioned in The Star’s report on Monday were killed in the past 10 months. They were tied up and strangled inside private homes within the greater Joburg area.
Police reported no signs of forced entry and believe these killings may be the work of a serial killer or a homophobic gang.
The lack of break-ins may mean the victims knew their would-be killers and could have invited them in.
The victim who has come to light after the previous report in The Star is Manolis Veloudos. He was found in his home in Greenside in April last year.
He was bound and murdered, seemingly by someone he had invited into his home. Again, there was no sign of forced entry onto the property, and very little was stolen.
He was also discovered to have an online dating site profile, which he had used to meet men, much like in the cases of several of the other victims.
However, Veloudos was bludgeoned to death with his laptop rather than strangled.
While a suspect was charged with murder, DNA evidence taken from the scene did not match the suspect.
This means the murderer may still be on the loose.
The victim’s niece, Evita Veloudos, said CCTV footage of her uncle with an unknown man on the night of the murder was given to the police, but it was subsequently lost by the investigating officers.
The most recent victim, Barney van Heerden, 39, was found bound and strangled in his Orange Grove home on September 19.
The murder was discovered by security guards after they had noticed his car gate open and his front door unlocked.
Since the incident was reported, distraught relatives, friends and other members of the gay community have come forward, describing other recent violent crimes that seemed similar.
In the first attack in December last year, Jim Cathels was found dead at his home in Berea.
Four months ago, Oscar O’Hara, 33, was bound and strangled by an unknown assailant or assailants.
Siphiwe Selby Nhlapo, 36, was killed in a similar manner at his flat in Kliptown, Soweto, on September 11, a week before Van Heerden’s death.
Anyone with information on similar crimes in recent months is requested to e-mail the details to shain.germaner @inl.co.za - The Star
i think that the police do have some part in the delay of finding the killer or killers as they "loose" important evidence and they don't get Disciplined. So much evidence has gone missing that could have closed so many cases but the police still do what they feel like even if it is illegal
As a criminologist,these crimes are befitting to those of a serial killer,the modus operandi is one & the same: get an invite on the dating network,meet in person,invite to home & then murder.The main aim is to remove the gay men in our community. Many serial killers become serial because they focus on a specific target group...i.e Mathe killed women,bound them with their underwear & raped them the same as Sithole. Their modus operandi was constant. I believe that if it was a woman doing the same thing,there would be a noise being made,only difference is that we always tend to think that men are serial killers. For all we know these crimes could be perpetuated by a group of women regardless of the men being gay. Anon the gay community is at risk until something is done by the government to punish crimes of hate against them it will remain discrimination. I'll count the number of women(who happen to be lesbians) who have been raped in an effort to correct their sexuality,justice for them remains a dream...
Someone must be knowing something. If so, please assist the police to curb the spread these senseless crimes.
Interesting that all the victims are potrayed as being innocent....But that is the world we live in, everyone else that is not gay is not okay, even the police. So because it takes time to track down and catch serial killers, it is now discrimination against gays? Sometimes it takes years to track down these pshycopaths. Would you have reacted the same if the serial killer was a woman killing men she meets on Mxit
There was a very similar murder in Cape Town a few months ago. Johan Roelefse was killed also without a break in.
EVEN IF THEY CATCH THIS KILLER, HE WOULD STILL PAY BAIL AND CARRY ON WITH HIS CRIMES. OUR JUSTICE SYSTEM WILL ALWAYS FAIL US AND GIVE THESE CRIMINALS THE ADVANTAGE OF BEING ONE STEP AHEAD. AS FOR THE POLICE OFFICERS THAT LOST THE CCTV FOOTAGE, YOU ARE SO USELESS, GETTING PAID FOR NOTHING & JUST WASTING TAX PAYERS MONEY.
I don't think the police can be blamed. It sounds like these men met with strange people they met online - gay or straight a person doing this is asking for trouble. Mxit and facebook also gets blamed but the person meeting a stranger is taking a huge risk
It's shocking that the SAPS is dragging their feet on this. How many more gay men have to be murdered by this apparent serial killer(s) before serious action is taken?
I think this article is not right, its not that police dont take gay crime or murders seriously. They dont take any crime seriously, dont feel prejudiced because you are gay, feel prejudiced because you live in a lawless country run, governed and looked after by criminals
sounds like a serial killer to me
Coward. He gets his satisfaction by murdering other gay men. He should rather step out of the closet himself and admit that he himself is gay instead of taking his feelings out on innocent people. There is a better way of channelling those feelings than murder.
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