Karabo Rankali appeared in the Kimberley Magistrate’s Court in connection with the murder of Piet Els. Picture: SAPS
Kimberley - A fifth male suspect has been arrested in connection with the murder of prominent Kimberley businessman Piet Els.

Karabo Rankali, 32, was on Tuesday arrested at a house in Donkerhoek, Kimberley, in connection with the murder of Els. A firearm was also confiscated, according to police spokesperson Captain Sergio Kock.

Rankali on Tuesday appeared, together with the fourth accused in the matter, Lebohang Elias Melesi, in the Kimberley Magistrate’s Court, where their case was postponed to next week.

They will be joining the first three accused - Morapedi Rankali, Motlalentwe Qhautse and Thuso Ramoleo - as co-accused in the matter, for which a high court trial date has already been set for later this year.

The five accused are being charged with murder, rape, housebreaking with the intent to rob (with aggravating circumstances) and the unlawful possession of a firearm, following a brutal attack on Piet Els’ farm outside Kimberley last year.

The incident occurred on Els’ farm Carter’s Ridge on January 23 2018, when he and his 67-year-old partner were viciously attacked and tortured by suspects who forced their way into Els’ farmhouse situated on Schmidtsdrift Road just outside of Kimberley.

The suspects fled the scene in Els’ white Mercedes-Benz after allegedly stealing firearms, jewellery, cash and cellphones. The car was later found abandoned next to the R31 road to Barkly West.

Els was admitted to the intensive care unit at Mediclinic Gariep after the incident, where he died on May 15 2018, almost four months after the attack, as a result of the injuries he sustained during the attack.

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