File picture: Mario Rivera Alvarado/AP

Johannesburg - The Hawks in KwaZulu-Natal arrested a 32-year-old suspect in connection with the murder of a police officer last year.

He was the third suspect in the murder of Captain Dumisani Mhlanzi, 54, of KwaMaphumulo on the KZN north coast, was gunned down in his hometown in February last year.

Police arrested two suspects last year in March, Mdeliseni Mathonsi, 29,  and Goodboy Sibiya, 40. Both remain behind custody.

At the time of his death, it was reported that the alleged criminals had fled with his service issue firearm.

Hawks spokesperson Captain Simphiwe Mhlongo said the suspect was arrested on Wednesday at Cato Crest. He said the arrest was conducted by a joint operation comprising the Hawk’s Durban Serious Organised Crime unit, Crime Intelligence and the National Intervention Unit.

“(The suspect) was found in possession of unlicensed firearm with live ammunition,” said Mhlongo.

Murdered: Captain Dumisani Mhlanzi was murdered for his firearm.

Mhlongo said the suspect would appear in the Durban Magistrate Court on Friday, facing murder, possession of unlicensed firearm and ammunition charges.

The trial of Mathonsi and Sibiya is expected to commence on July 29 at the Pietermaritzburg High court.