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Port Elizabeth - A 35-year-old man made his first appearance in the Humansdorp Magistrate's Court on Wednesday in connection with the murder of 76-year-old Duncan Lethbridge of St Francis Bay in the Eastern Cape, who was killed during a home invasion last week.

Police spokesperson, Captain Gerda Swart, said that there was a possibility Bongani Faku would apply for bail, but if that should happen this would be opposed by the State.

Police said post mortem results showed that Lethbridge died as a result of suffocation after he was tied up during a home invasion last week. The elderly man, his wife and their housekeeper were assaulted when suspects ransacked their home last Thursday. Lethbridge was later found dead, his hands bound and mouth covered with sellotape.

The housekeeper was allegedly working outside the house when she was approached by two unknown men armed with firearms who pushed her inside before tying her and her employers up.

Two hours after the incident the housekeeper managed to alert neighbours who immediately called ambulance services and the police. The neighbours discovered the elderly man lying face down in the living room, hands still bound and mouth covered, and when paramedics arrived on the scene they declared him dead.

Swart said the men assaulted the elderly couple during the robbery.  

“The suspects demanded the keys of the safe and the woman was forced to unlock it," she said. The robbers took an undisclosed amount of cash and other valuables before fleeing the scene on foot.

Police are still searching for the second suspect.

The case was postponed until August 29 for further investigation.

African News Agency (ANA)