Wooden court gavel
Wooden court gavel

Lengthy jail time for three in Kathrada family murder

By Molaole Montsho Time of article published Sep 18, 2021

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Three men have been sentenced for the murder of Struggle icon Ahmed Kathrada's relatives in Schweizer-Reneke three years ago.

On Friday National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson in North West, Henry Mamothame, said the three were sentenced in the North West High Court sitting in Klerksdorp.

"Kgotso Moeletsi, 32, Muhammad Satar, 19, and Adam Mohale were charged with double murder, attempted robbery with aggravating circumstances, possession of a prohibited firearm and ammunition and conspiracy to commit murder," he said.

"Moeketsi was handed down two life terms plus 10 years, 15 years and three years, which will run concurrently. Satar was sentenced to 15 years on each count of murder and 10 years for attempted robbery with aggravating circumstances. The sentences will run concurrently. Mohale was sentenced to 15 years on two counts of murder and the sentences will run concurrently."

The trio conspired through a series of meetings between September and November 2018 to rob the house and wholesale business of the Kathrada family in Schweizer-Reneke, a robbery during which the owner Yunus Kathrada, 65, and his son Ahmed Kathrada, 29, were shot and killed.

The accused gained access to the Kathrada home when Ahmed entered the yard from the mosque. His mother who at the time was home with her husband Yunus, went to open the burglar door for him when she heard his sudden scream. Yunus also rushed out of the house to inspect what the commotion was about and found his son shot.

Giving chase to the suspect who was trying to escape, he was also shot dead.

Yunus was Ahmed Kathrada's nephew.

"A close family friend of the Kathrada family, Mohammed Satar, set in motion the wheels of the robbery by providing inside information to a group of conspirators and tipping them off when Ahmed left the mosque for home on November 1, 2018, the day the crime was committed.

"Despite being offered a lift by Ahmed to his home that evening, with plenty opportunities to discard the plan to commit the heinous crimes, he went on to warn his co-conspirators of Ahmed’s movement. He even attended the scene of the murder where he subsequently received a call from one of his co-conspirators," Mamothame said.

In sentencing, the court considered the victim impact statement prepared by Kathrada's widow, wherein she explained the devastating effect the death of the family members had on her life.

She described the raw emotions of seeing her husband and son’s passing as a traumatic experience, changing her life for the worst.

She was even forced to relocate from the quiet small town in which she spent 37 years of her life. This crime further forced her into closing down the business, which resulted in employees loosing their livelihood.

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