A Western Cape gardener and his friend have been convicted of murdering an elderly couple he worked for.
Gcinilelitha Ngcobelothe and his friend Lwazi Ntsibantsiba were this week convicted in the Western Cape High Court for the murder of Rugeya Addinall and her husband, Riedwaan Addinall.
The couple, who were 82-years-old, were strangled to death in their Sandown Drive, Ottery home on January 5, 2019.
Ngcobelothe had worked as a gardener for the couple for some years.
The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) said in addition to murder, the duo were convicted of robbery with aggravating circumstances.
Provincial NPA spokesperson Eric Ntabazalila said the State planned to ask for life sentences to be imposed during sentencing proceedings in November.
Explaining the gruesome details of the crime, Ntabazalila said rat poison pellets were found in the wife Rugeya’s mouth.
“Following the murder, the accused ransacked the deceased’s house, loading a cordless phone, flat screen television, microwave oven, Blue-Ray DVD player, braai grid, a remote control, and keys into their vehicle. However, they could not take the loot, as the vehicle could not start,” he said.
Ntabazalila said the couple’s bodies were found by family members in the living room.
“It showed a struggle had ensued, with upturned furniture, strewn household items and shopping on the floor.”
The NPA said during court proceeding both of the accused turned on each other, accusing the other of the murder.
During the trial it was revealed that Ngcobelothe, who had worked for the Addinalls as a gardener for years, brought Ntsibantsiba to the property under the pretext that they are going to work together.
However Ntsibantsiba denied being present on the day of the murders.
“He claimed that after arriving at the property, he was asked to go buy groceries for the couple and he later travelled to Kraaifontein to clear a blocked drain for another client of his.”
However, the NPA said CCTV footage placed both the accused at the scene of the crime, and dismissed their versions.
Sentencing proceedings is set down for November 3.