WATCH: SA murder accused, hiding in Brazil, re-arrested for girlfriend's murder nine years later
Durban - A South African man, who has been on the run since the murder of his girlfriend in 2011, was arrested in Rio de Janeiro in Brazil this week.
Gerhard Jansen van Vuuren is expected to travel back to SA where he will stand trial for the murder of Andrea Venter, who he is accused of stabbing to death outside his home in Gauteng nine years ago.
Police spokesperson, Brigadier Vish Naidoo, said Jansen van Vuuren tried to take his own life following Venter’s death. His suicide attempt failed.
“Jansen Van Vuuren was charged with the murder of Venter before the Randburg Magistrates Court. He was later granted bail in the Johannesburg High Court after police successfully opposed bail twice before the Randburg Magistrates Court. Four days before the start of his murder trial in May 2013, Jansen Van Vuuren fled the country using false documentation,” Naidoo said.
He said a warrant of arrest was issued by Interpol Pretoria which kicked off a process to trace and track the suspect down.
Naidoo said Jansen van Vuuren was later arrested by Brazilian authorities in August 2013, on a charge of false documentation. He was released in 2015 after serving a sentence for this crime.
“Since then, Interpol Pretoria had been in contact with Brazilian authorities to locate him. Several years later, the investigating teams collaborative efforts has now culminated with the arrest of the murder fugitive at an identified address in Brazil,” Naidoo said.
Jansen Van Vuuren will be kept in police custody at a public prison in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, until such a time where the extradition process that has been granted by the Supreme Court of Appeal, will be expedited.
National SAPS Commissioner, General Khehla Sitole, has applauded the efforts of the teams, in both countries, for successfully locating and re-arresting Jansen Van Vuuren.
“This teams efforts in tracking down this suspect after many years of him being on the run should be commended by all. A lesson should also be drawn from this case and send out a stern warning to all who commit crimes against women and children, that the long arm of the law is bound to catch you. Our focus remains on extraditing him back into the country to stand trial for the murder of his ex-girlfriend with the intention of bringing closure to the family and friends of the deceased,” he said.
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