Man in dock 11 years after murder

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Cape Town - Eleven years ago, Jean Johanna Schapiro, 70, was murdered in her Mouille Point flat. On Wednesday, Bonani Lumka, 35, appeared in the Cape Town Magistrate’s Court in connection with her death.

According to the case summary of the case, Lumka left 24 fingerprints around Schapiro’s flat. Schapiro, a widow and grandmother who lived alone, was robbed and strangled in her Albermarle flat in Beach Road at about 10pm on March 15, 2002.

It is alleged Lumka and two accomplices broke into Schapiro’s ground-floor apartment by damaging the burglar bars and smashing the bathroom window.

Once inside, the men are alleged to have ransacked the flat. Schapiro had been out, but returned home, interrupting the burglars.

“She was then beaten up by the accused and his friends and… was strangled with a telephone cord, which caused her death,” a summary of the case reads.

Schapiro received injuries to her head, mouth and upper arms.

After the murder, Lumka, who had been lived in Nyanga, and his accomplices allegedly fled to the Eastern Cape. Police visited Lumka’s house eight times, but he was not there.

Police arrested him when he returned to Cape Town on December 6. The other two suspects remain at large.

Lumka has been charged with murder and housebreaking with intent to rob.

The court heard on Wednesday that the prosecution was waiting for DNA test results.

Lumka’s lawyer, Chantal Gillion, agreed that the case could be postponed for the outcome of the DNA tests and for a decision by the director of public prosecutions on whether the case would be heard by the Western Cape High Court or the Cape Town Regional Court.

Lumka is to remain behind bars until his next appearance on May 3.

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Cape Argus

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