Hit-and-run probe: cop’s car set alight

iol pic sa PN Hawks car000 Independent Newspapers A car belonging to a Hawks investigator was set alight in his yard.

Johannesburg -

The family of a little boy who was killed in a hit and run accident last year are now living in fear after a car belonging to one of the investigating officers was set alight.

Olerato Chiloane-Makena was killed a week after his fifth birthday when a black Jeep which was speeding up and down a residential road in Soshanguve, hit him in May last year. The boy had been attending a family reunion and was excited when a friend arrived in a red Ferrari, hours before the tragedy. Pictures show Olerato posing, dancing and playing around the fancy car. No one knew that those would be his final moments caught on camera.

A man was arrested after initially telling the police he was driving the car, but when he found out that Olerato had died, he confessed he had been bribed to claim responsibility.

Then Mantshole Moekwa was arrested and has been standing trial for culpable homicide, but this week the actual alleged driver of the car, Sarah Mothapo, appeared in the Soshanguve Magistrate’s Court alongside three other people.

Mothapo, her friend Wilhelmina Rapule, investigating officer Warrant Officer Samuel Kgalakgosi and her lawyer, Confidence Rikhotso, appeared on charges of defeating the ends of justice.

Mothapo’s long-time lover and father of her two children, Donald Khoza, and a friend, David Shabalala, are still being sought by police.

Moekwa has turned State witness against the group.

The four were arrested last week after an investigation by a task team, which included members of the Hawks and senior police investigators. They found that Mothapo allegedly paid Moekwa to take responsibility of the accident.

Rapule, who was in the car at the time of the accident, was released on R1 000 bail.

All the accused will be back in court on Monday.

Sources in the police said the investigator and his family were sleeping just after midnight yesterday when they smelt something burning. “When they went outside the BMW was on fire. They called the fire department but there was nothing that could be done to save the car. It was burnt badly.”

Olerato’s mother Reshoketswe Makena said: “This means that our family is also in danger.

“If these people are not scared of going after the police, what about us?

“Our family cannot go through any more pain.

“We just want justice, why can’t they just accept that?”

Olerato was her only child.

- Pretoria News Weekend

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