Durban - Three men who robbed a British American Tobacco delivery vehicle, and shot and wounded two people, have been sentenced to an effective 18 years behind bars.
Hendrick Zukazi, 50, of Tembisa; Nbazima Frans Mashavha, 38, of Mokopane and Bernard Dumisani Jala, 52, from Olievenhoutbosch were this week convicted and sentenced in the Mokopane Regional Court.
Limpopo National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson Mashudu Malabi-Dzhangi said the three men robbed the British American Tobacco delivery vehicle full of cigarettes on October 15, 2020.
“The truck was delivering cigarettes around the Waterberg district and had stopped at a certain tuck shop in Mahwelereng when they robbed the truck,” Malabi-Dzhangi said.
Malabi-Dzhangi said the accused were arrested with the help of Hendrick de Vos, of Waterberg Neighbourhood Watch security, in collaboration with Mokopane SAPS.
The NPA said throughout the trial the trio maintained their innocence.
During court proceedings it was revealed that all the accused had previous convictions against them.
In aggravation of sentencing, State advocate Moses Mohale said these type of offences were prevalent in this area and said there was a financial loss, as the stolen cigarettes were never recovered.
“The accused persons proceeded to shoot the witnesses even though there was no resistance from them and one of the witnesses is no longer fit to work due to their injuries,” said Mohale.
Malabi-Dzhangi said all three were sentenced to 18 years for armed robbery and six years imprisonment for attempted murder.
The NPA welcomed the sentence and said it hoped that this sentence will deter other would-be offenders from committing such crimes.