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Wedding day bloodshed

Crime & Courts

By Solly Maphumulo

A R400 000 Rolex watch and R10 000 in cash appear to be the reason why the best man at a wedding was gunned down.

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An AK47. Photo: Alon Skuy

Robbers opened fire at Chris Kouremetis with an AK-47 and a 9mm pistol on Sunday just as he was about to leave the Cradle restaurant in Muldersdrift.

Warrant officer Odette van Staden said it seemed Couremetis was targeted for his expensive watch and the R10 000 cash he carried. Couremetis, believed to be in his late 20s, was shot with an AK-47 and a 9mm pistol.

He was the best man at a lavish wedding ceremony at the Cradle Restaurant.

The ceremony was attended by about 90 guests from all over the world when the shooting took place.

“We believe this is part of the Rolex gang, who specifically look for their targets,” Van Staden said.

She said 12 shots were fired, and two bullets hit Kouremetis in the chest and hand. The rest of the bullets left his luxurious car, a Cayenne worth more than R1 million, riddled with holes.

Last week, a man was shot and killed for his Rolex watch in Joburg. He had been returning from a shopping centre when his car was pushed off the road by the robbers.

Van Staden said police believe the bullet penetrated the heart of Couremetis, a property developer based in Cape Town.

“I think this must be the shot that killed him. The other bullet wound in the hand was not serious. When the paramedics arrived at the scene, he was certified dead,” she said.

At around 10.30pm, the two armed men emerged in the car park and allegedly opened fire on Couremetis. When he dropped to the ground, his attackers took his watch and moonbag containing R10 000 wrapped around his waist.

Two women were seated in the back of the car, and Kouremetis and his male passenger were about to get into the car when they starting fire.

The guests inside the restaurants scattered in panic, some hiding under tables. The two women were rushed to hospital, where they were sedated and treated for shock.

A woman, who refused to be named, said her daughter was among the guests at the wedding ceremony and was still traumatised.

Like many other guests, the girl had travelled all the way from Australia to attend her best friend’s wedding. She had been friends with the bride since their high school days.

“She was so distraught that she could not even relate the story properly. She was vomiting all over the place,” the mother said.

 

“My daughter said people were running around trying to hide as the sound of gunfire continued.

“It sounds like it was a hit because no other guests were hurt or robbed. There is something fishy,” she added.

 

Couremetis’s father Costaz was too distraught too speak to The Star last night. - The Star

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