Suspect charged with murder of 10 family members to remain behind bars, his identity withheld

Published Apr 24, 2023


Durban - The 26-year-old suspect accused of killing 10 members of a Pietermaritzburg family will remain behind bars.

The Pietermaritzburg Magistrate’s Court ordered that the suspect’s identity be withheld until an identity parade is conducted, the National Prosecuting Authority said.

Their spokesperson, Natasha Kara, told IOL that the suspect made his first appearance in court on Monday.

“He faces 10 counts of murder, three counts of attempted murder and unlawful possession of a firearm and ammunition.

“The matter was adjourned to May 5 for bail investigation and the accused will remain behind bars.”

In the early hours of April 19, armed gunmen are believed to have stormed the homestead in the Imbali township, fatally wounding 10 people.

The victims comprised of seven women and three men, with the youngest victim being a 13-year-old boy.

Hours after the shooting, top brass of the SAPS and Police Minister Bheki Cele descended on the crime scene.

Police launched a manhunt for the suspects, apprehending them less than 2km from the crime scene.

One was fatally wounded in a shootout with police, while another suspect is on the run.

According to police reports, the four were nabbed while participating in a ‘cleansing ceremony’ conducted by a traditional healer.

The Police Ministry urged communities to work with police by coming forward with any information that can assist in apprehending individuals or gangs who are hellbent on terrorising communities through acts of criminality.