Durban woman and hitman jailed for killing fiancé after he refused to pay ’damages’ for impregnating her
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A DURBAN family celebrated outside the Durban High Court when Telkom manager Jabulani Hlongwa’s fianceé and the hitman she hired were on Tuesday sentenced to life imprisonment for his murder.
On August 15, 2017, Hlongwa was abducted from his home in Inanda, north of Durban. His kidnappers ransacked his home before taking him to a secluded area outside uMlazi where he was shot in the head.
Hlongwa’s body was found a few days later by police. His fiancée, Doreen Hlangu, 41, and the hitman she hired, Mnqobi Miya, 23, were arrested. The investigation was concluded by Detective Rajan “RM” Govender from the provincial organised crime unit.
During the trial, the court heard that Hlongwa paid lobola for Hlangu in 2016. Their child died at birth. This caused friction between the couple. The couple held meetings with their family elders to try to find a solution to their problem, but Hlangu continued to blame Hlongwa for the infant’s death.
Hlangu demanded that he pay damages of R10 000 for impregnating her even though he had already paid lobola – damages are usually paid to a woman’s family if a man impregnates her before lobola is paid.
Hlongwa refused to pay damages. This angered Hlangu and led to the end of her relationship with him. In June 2017 she enlisted the help of a childhood friend to meet people who would kill Hlongwa.
Hlangu and her hired hitman Miya were each sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder, 15 years for robbery with aggravating circumstances and five years for kidnapping.
Miya was handed a further eight years for being in possession of a firearm unlawfully and four years for being in possession of ammunition unlawfully.
Judge Jacqueline Henriques, in passing sentence, said that assassination contracts were a type of atrocity that had to be combated. The courts had a duty in the discharge of their function to visit the severest punishment on such perpetrators.
“In this matter it is clear that the murder and other offences occurred as part of a contract killing with (Hlangu) as the instigator, active participant and mastermind. The heinous nature of contract killings and the need to impose the harshest sentences for such offences has been emphasised by our sentencing courts.”
She said there were no substantial or compelling circumstances that would make the court deviate from the minimum and maximum prescribed sentences in accordance with the offences.
Hlongwa’s younger brother, Raphael Mpumelelo Hlongwa, said the time leading up to the trial and sentencing had been a difficult period for the family.
“He did not deserve to be killed in such a brutal manner. He was a huge help to everyone in the family in every way. He was a quiet person. It is still difficult for us emotionally to overcome his death. We have spent four years coming to court. We are happy as a family with the court outcome.”
He said that the family had from the onset suspected that Hlangu had something to do with Hlongwa’s disappearance.
“We focused on her following my brother’s disappearance. I am grateful that the police followed up on information we had given them. It is through that information that today (on Tuesday) there was a hefty sentence.”
Senior State advocate Cheryl Naidu prosecuted the matter.