Three suspects arrested for young Limpopo couple’s murder
Pretoria - Three suspects were arrested yesterday for the alleged murder of a young couple, Limpopo police said.
This follows the discovery of the bodies of Lucia Malapane, 18, and Nius Malatji, 19, by a neighbour on Sunday.
The neighbour was Malatji’s employer at Ga-Rapitsi village, near Tzaneen in Limpopo.
Provincial SAPS spokesperson Motlafela Mojapelo said the 47-year-old business man had gone to see why Malatji had not been to work.
"The neighbour had apparently gone to the house to find out why his employee did not report for work that morning, when he made the gruesome discovery. The couple’s baby was found sitting next to the bodies,” said Mojapelo.
“The matter was reported to the police and on arrival at the scene, the deceased were found with gruesome injuries, then we launched investigations.”
The murders sparked widespread violent protests by community members in the area, after they accused the businessman of being responsible for the murders of the couple.
“The angry mob from this village went on the rampage, torching the businessman’s shop and a motor vehicle. They proceeded to his house, burnt it and in the process killed some livestock, including chickens, goats and pigs. The suspects then fled the scene,” Mojapelo said.
He said police investigations into the killings continued until the three suspects were arrested later on the same day.
“The suspects were found in possession of some items belonging to the deceased.”
The suspects, aged between 34 and 47, appeared before Bolobedu Magistrate’s Court yesterday, facing charges of house breaking with intent to commit two counts of murder, rape and robbery.
Mojapelo said the motive for the murders would be determined by police investigations.