Zola Tongo.

It is frighteningly easy to find a hitman in Cape Town ready to kill for an agreed fee, an investigation has found.

But it seems to take a little more groundwork than simply speaking to the first taxi driver you meet at the airport, as taxi driver Zola Tongo claimed in the Western Cape High Court this week. After a plea bargain, Tongo was jailed for 18 years for his part in the killing of honeymooner Anni Dewani, allegedly at the behest of her groom, British millionaire Shrien Dewani.

This week we set out to find out how easy it was to pay for murder in Cape Town.

The results were scary. In one day three people were found who were willing to kill someone for money. The asking price ranged from R5 000 to R15 000.

But while journalists found it was not difficult to find potential hitmen, the hitmen wanted time to find out about their victims’ habits, often wanted to be paid upfront, charged more for high-profile victims and preferred to have the “client” referred by someone they trusted.

It took only half a day to round up a trio of young men willing to carry out a hit. However, all three said conducting a hit would take several days, or even weeks, to organise.

The three potential hitmen all said they had been approached to kill before, but had various reasons for turning down the jobs – the client - Saturday Argus