Stabbings mar birthday party

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A ROBBERY and three friends being stabbed is not what Zaheer Ebrahim from Groenkloof had in mind when he booked a weekend at Stonehouse Mountain Lodge near Hartbeespoort Dam for his 30th birthday.

The evening turned into chaos when two men armed with knives broke into the lodge where Ebrahim and 25 other guests at his party were staying on Saturday night. “It all happened so fast. We only realised what had happened when I saw my friend Dean’s shirt was soaked with blood.”

Ebrahim had returned to his chalet before the incident happened at about 10.30pm, he said. After a braai some guests had gone to their chalets while others were chatting in the boma.

Among those in the boma were his friends Dean Shiller, Dimitri Ioannou and Francois Lottering. They were alerted by security guards about a break-in and ran to the chalet where the two men had been seen.

Ebrahim said: “an altercation broke out and Dimitri had a scuffle with one of the men. In those few moments Dimitri and Dean were stabbed and Francois was cut on his arm”, he said.

Ebrahim said he was convinced the robbery was an “inside job”.

“The men entered the premises through a service gate that was left open. They bypassed four other chalets and knew exactly where they were going. The guards just stood by while the scuffle was taking place.”

The knife entered Shiller’s chest millimetres from his heart and pierced a cavity. Ioannou’s lung collapsed after the stabbing.

Ebrahim said his friends had been released from hospital and were recovering well. Lodge owner Mike Fickett said he regretted the incident.

Police are investigating. – Yolande du Preez

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