Robbery accused gets bail

Pietermaritzburg - A man accused of being part of a trio who robbed houses after pouring boiling water over the occupants was granted bail in the Pietermartizburg Regional Court on Wednesday.

Magistrate Riaan de Wet granted Siyabonga Mchunu R5000 bail, with Mchunu having to report to a police station three times a week and stay 30km away from the victims' homes.

Mchunu, 28, allegedly led Mvusi Dlamini and Lucky Mbonanbi to two houses in Albert Falls, 26km north of Pietermarizburg, in February this year.

Dlamini, 28, and Mbonanbi, 26, allegedly poured boiling water over the occupants of the two homes, including a 30-month-old baby, to force them to hand over valuables.

Dlamini and Mbonanbi took R5000, a firearm, and two airguns from the one home and took R45 000 and jewellery worth R101 000 from the other.

They were allegedly armed with assault rifles and handguns.

Dlamini and Mbonanbi were denied bail when they appeared in court in May.

The State opposed Mchunu's bail, stating the seriousness of the charges, the violence perpetrated against Dlamini and Mbonanbi's victims, and that his proximity to the victims' homes was concerning.

De Wet said the seriousness of the crimes was not in itself a reason to refuse Mchunu bail.

The trial was set down for May next year in the Pietermaritzburg Regional Court. - Sapa