Picture: SAPS
Pietermaritzburg - Two members of a syndicate that defrauded insurance companies by taking out life cover policies for people they later murdered were convicted in the Pietermartizburg High Court this week.

Hlengiwe Zuma, 41, and Fisani Khoza, 40, were sentenced to 15 years for murder, eight years for attempted murder and eight years for fraud on Monday.

They claimed over R1.3 million from different insurance companies.

Zuma and Khoza opened life cover insurance policies for Mzomuhle Zuma as well as Sonosakhe Mdlalose, police said in a statement on Tuesday.
"On 27 August 2015, the accused took Mzomuhle Zuma to Greytown area where he was placed on the road. They ran him over with a stolen vehicle and killed him instantly."

Hlengiwe Zuma cashed in the insurance policy, and shared the money with her accomplices.

In March, 2016 Mdlalose was found dead on a road in the Ematimatolo area.

"After an intensive investigation by Hawks members, it was revealed that Mdlalose was insured by Khoza and on the date in question, the deceased was intentionally run over with a stolen vehicle by the accused. He was declared dead at the scene."

The attempted murder charge stemmed from another elaborate plan by Zuma to cash in on her domestic worker's death.

"She was taken a local tavern by her accomplices and drugged before she was taken to Copesville area where she was placed on the road. One of the accused drove a stolen motor vehicle at a high speed and ran her over."

However, the woman survived the murder attempt. 

The duo were also found guilty of the murder of Bongani Gcabashe who was shot and killed in Ematimatolo in August 2016. 

"Gcabashe was killed after the accused failed to get him drunk and ran him over with a vehicle. Jabulile Zaca, 54, who is not yet convicted allegedly instructed the accused to execute the job by shooting the victim."

Zuma and Khoza's alleged accomplices - Zaca, Zamokwakhe Khanyile, 37, and Doda Khumalo, 37 - are expected back in the Pietermaritzburg High Court on November 30.