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Killer cop gets life imprisonment

Published May 27, 2021


A FORMER police officer, convicted of murder and defeating the ends of justice, has been sentenced to life and seven years imprisonment.

The Western Cape High Court declared Thanduxolo Mbonyana unfit to possess a firearm, and ordered the sentences run concurrently.

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He was found guilty of the murder of Lusanda Mpumelelo Makosana, which was a result of an earlier quarrel between Makosana and Mbonyana.

In his plea and sentencing agreement, Mbonyana explained that his girlfriend, Matsepho Manaiwa and her friends Asanda Magqashela, Tisetso Shaun Molelle, Luli Lusapo and Monti had a party at a house in Mandela Park, Khayelitsha.

He phoned his girlfriend, who told him that she was at Magqashela’s house. He went to the house and found Makosana’s vehicle parked in the yard.

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Makosana was standing in the kitchen with Molelle and Monti.

“Without any warning, he took out his service pistol and shot Makosana once in the chest. Makosana fell and Mbonyana shot him several times more. He shot him seven times in total,” said National Prosecuting Authority spokesperson Eric Ntabazalila.

Mbonyana then grabbed Makosana by his shoulders, dragged his body out of the house, and bundled it into his own vehicle.

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“He did all this in front of everyone who was in the house. He took the body and his vehicle, and dumped them in another part of Mandela Park. Mbonyana tampered with the crime scene, as he attempted to clean the blood with a mop, water and a household cleaner. He collected and removed cartridges from the crime scene, while assuring his girlfriend that she must not panic as he would fix everything. He then changed his bloodstained clothes with items he got from Monti. He washed his clothes at Monti’s place,” said Ntabazalila.

Makosana’s body was discovered on March 4, 2018, with his pants pulled halfway down his legs. Mbonyana was arrested in Ekuphumleni, Khayelitsha, and was charged with murder and defeating the ends of justice.

Mbonyana was released on bail after his court appearance in this case.

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The confessed heavy drinker and cocaine user was arrested again, while on bail, on September 3, 2019, on a charge of robbery with aggravating circumstances. He was denied bail.

State advocate Dail Andrews told the court that, as a police officer, Mbonyana was supposed to uphold the law and protect the vulnerable members of society.

“He tarnished the trust and respected relationship between the police and the public, as they would always say that Makosana was killed by an active SAPS member, with his police issued firearm, while being defenceless and unprotected. He acted with premeditation and dolus directus. He acted with clear precision from the time he executed the murder, to the time he changed his clothing and washed it,” he said.

The NPA welcomed the sentence handed down, as crimes committed by those expected to uphold the law cannot be tolerated, said Ntabazalila.

Related Topics:

Crime and courts