Cape Town - Three alleged gang members appeared in the Western Cape High Court in connection with the murder of a 3-year-old in Heather Park, Eerste River, and the subsequent murder and attempted murders of witnesses.
Oswin Conradie, Heinrich Louis and Irwin Snel appeared for a pre-trial hearing where the State requested the three be charged together under the Prevention of Organised Crime Act (POCA), as they are accused of committing the offences in the furtherance of criminal activity of the “Beach Cats” gang.
Conradie had been arrested in August 2020 and charged with the murder of 3-year-old Marilyn Adams, who was killed during a gang-related shooting on July 28, 2020.
Marilyn had been sitting outside with her parents when gunmen opened fire at their home in Normandie Street. The family ran inside to take cover when they discovered the toddler had been shot in the head.
Conradie was arrested and released from custody after the matter was struck off the roll, but was rearrested in September 2020. He appeared at the Blue Downs Magistrate’s Court on September 7, 2020, for the murder, and later brought a bail application which was denied by the magistrate.
The State said that subsequent to his bail refusal as the leader of the gang, Louis and Snel then endeavoured to take out or scare the witnesses to the 3-year-old’s murder. The State is of the view that these acts were a way to silence and intimidate witnesses to aid in Conradie’s case, who at that stage was awaiting trial.
After Marilyn’s murder, the State suggested to the court that the murder of 15-year-old Christy Meiring and the attempted murder of two others (who cannot be named) on November 6, 2020, was done to silence witnesses. This incident was followed up on November 11, 2020, when there was an attempt on the life of the same person, who had now seen how both Marilyn and Christy were killed.
Judge Robert Henney took issue with the POCA charge and suggested the State charge Snel and Louis as accessories after the fact for their part in allegedly assisting Conradie to evade justice for the murder of the toddler.
However, State advocate Nathan Adriaanse was resolute in his view that the actions of Louis and Snel were to further the activity of the gang in line with the murder allegations against Conradie.
Adriaanse did, however, concede to Judge Henney’s view and indicated that the State would amend the indictment.
The trial date has not yet been determined, but the State has proposed a date in March next year for the matter to proceed.