Lucas Bhandas tuck shop near Cato Manor was destroyed by fire shortly after a man was found dead there. Picture: Zainul Dawood

Durban -

A tuck shop owned by a Mozambican in Durban was looted and set alight this week just hours after police were called in to stop a mob from torching the property.

Residents of Wiggins near Cato Manor attacked the shop after the body of Sibusiso Bhengu, 21, was found dead inside it early on Monday morning.

He had been assaulted and his body had been pushed halfway through the burglar bars.

Police escorted the shop owner, Lucas Bhanda, from the property in Lethokuhle Road after a mob had gathered outside the property and bayed for his blood.

Hours later, after the police left, the mob returned and burnt down the shop. Cato Manor police have opened a case of arson.

All that remained on Wednesday was debris and burnt fridges.

Residents said Bhanda lived on the premises. They were unhappy that he was not charged in connection with Bhengu’s death.

However, police said they needed evidence to charge Bhanda, and have appealed for witnesses to the alleged murder to come forward.

Bhengu’s death sent shock waves through the area on Monday, and residents threatened to attack Bhanda.

He had to be escorted from his shop by police on Monday. The community then looted his shop, broke the gates and damaged the windows.

Bhengu’s mother, Gladys Bhengu, who was preparing for her son’s funeral, said she was shocked by the incident.

Bhanda declined to comment to the Daily News.

Police spokesman Captain Thulani Zwane said Bhengu had died after allegedly being assaulted.

Daily News