Marcel (seated), Cecilia (red and black jacket), and Marinda Steyn (grey jacket), with Zak Valentine (burgundy shirt), appear at the High Court in Johannesburg on charges related to 11 killings. Picture: Shain Germaner
A married journalist at Huisgenoot, one of South Africa's biggest selling Afrikaans language magazines, has reportedly been suspended for becoming romantically involved with one of the accused in a murder trial she was covering.

The woman, who is also reportedly working on a book about the murder case, is believed to be head over heels in love with 22-year-old Le Roux Steyn who was handed a 25-year sentence after agreed to testify against his four co-accused. 

The pair reportedly exchanged Whatsapp messages in which the convicted killer asked the journalist if she would wait for him to complete his prison sentence.

Steyn, his mother Marinda, 51, and his sister Marcel, 20, began their killing spree in 2012 in Krugersdorp and it lasted until 2016. They also committed crimes related to fraud, theft, and intimidation. In total, the group murdered 11 people. A neighbour,  Zack Valentine, also became embroiled in the murder spree. Marinda was sentenced to a total of 115 years behind bars.

After splitting from a church group called Overcomers Through Christ (OTC), Cecilia - who claims to be a reformed Satanist - and her friends formed the Electus Per Deus (Chosen by God). This split allegedly sparked the killing spree. 

According to the Rapport newspaper, the journalist has been suspended while Media24, which owns the magazine she works for, conducts an internal investigation.