Pretoria - The family of Sam Mbatha have been left in the dark after the charges against one of the suspects in his murder case were withdrawn.
Mbatha was murdered in June last year in Klipgat at Ikageng Section, and his remains were found charred beyond recognition in a burnt sedan.
DNA tests confirmed in January this year that the body in the vehicle was Mbatha’s, an LGBTQI activist.
Four suspects – Arthur Khoza, 19, Thato Masilela, 22, Junior Modise, 21, and Mahlatsi Nkuna, 21 – were arrested a few days after the grisly discovery.
But yesterday family member Mtshengiseni Mbatha said they were surprised to hear of the withdrawal of the charges against Modise, who was apparently not implicated in the murder by the other three.
“We want to know why the charges were withdrawn. We were shocked that it happened. I mean, the suspect did say he was involved initially, so why were the charges withdrawn?” he said.
Mtshengiseni Mbatha said that despite the withdrawal the family were hopeful justice would be served.
“We want justice to be served the right way,” he said.
On Monday, the High Court North West Division sitting at the Ga-Rankuwa Regional Court postponed the case against the remaining three to September 26 for pre-trial.
National Prosecuting Authority regional spokesperson for the North West Division, Henry Mamothame, said: “Charges against Modise were withdrawn, as the prosecution could not find any substantive evidence linking him to the murder.”