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One of three men accused of killing Hillary Gardee denied bail

Mduduzi Gama, Philemon Lukhele and Sipho Mkhatshwa, accused of killing Hillary Gardee.

South Africa - Mbombela - 9 May 2022. The three men accused of murdering Hillary Gardee stand in the dock during their bail application at the Nelspruit Magistrate’s Court. From left: Mduduzi Gama, Philemon Lukhele and Sipho Mkhatshwa. Picture: Oupa Mokoena African News Agency (ANA)

Published Aug 3, 2022

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Rustenburg - One of the three men accused of killing Hillary Gardee was denied bail at the Nelspruit Magistrate’s Court in Mpumalanga.

Sipho Mkhatshwa was denied bail after the court ruled that he was a flight risk.

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Mkhatshwa and his co-accused, Philemon Lukhele and Mduduzi Gama, are accused of killing Hillary Gardee, 28, who was the daughter of former EFF secretary-general Godrich Gardee.

They are facing charges of kidnapping, murder, rape, defeating the ends of justice and conspiracy to commit murder.

According to SABC News, Mkhatshwa was arrested after a traditional healer tipped off the police that Mkhatshwa consulted him for cleansing, stating that he had killed a woman.

Lukhele’s and Gama’s arrests followed.

The public broadcaster further reported that Mkhatshwa’s wife, Zandile Magagula, told the court last week that the incarceration of Mkhatshwa was having a negative impact on the family financially.

The wife testified in a bail hearing that although she was employed, she could not maintain household expenses of the family without her husband’s financial support.

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The bail application of Lukhele and Gama was expected to continue on Monday. The three men were expected to appear together in court on August 22.

Hillary Gardee’s body was found at a timber plantation outside Mbombela (Nelspruit) in May.

Hillary went missing on April 29, when she went shopping in Mbombela. She was with a 3-year-old child.

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