Police are investigating a crime where 4 people were murdered during a mob justice attack in Zandspruit, the bodies of 4 young men were discovered at a soccer field while 5 were rushed to hospital. Picture: Itumeleng English/African News Agency(ANA)
Police are investigating a crime where 4 people were murdered during a mob justice attack in Zandspruit, the bodies of 4 young men were discovered at a soccer field while 5 were rushed to hospital. Picture: Itumeleng English/African News Agency(ANA)

Angry Zandspruit community feel no guilt over mob justice killing of 4 men, attempted murder of 5 others

By Itumeleng Mafisa Time of article published May 19, 2021

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Johannesburg - COMMUNITY members of Zandspruit, in Johannesburg, said they did not feel guilty for killing four young men and trying to kill five more, who are accused of terrorising the community.

This comes after a group of youth were rounded up in the early hours of Wednesday morning.

They were beaten, torched and asked to reveal other thugs from the neighbourhood.

The Star understands that there were plans to hunt the problematic boys down, but things took a turn for the worse when a security guard was robbed at around 4am, when he was going to work.

The guard managed to scream and chase one of the assailants into a passage, where he hit a dead end.

Within minutes community members were out with different weapons and axes, all baying for the blood of the criminals.

“We found them and we made sure that they showed us the other group members. When we found them, they were all enjoying imbawula at 4am. They were probably done with their night robberies because they don’t sleep,” said a community member, who asked to be called John.

He said the group of boys, who all seemed younger than 30, were responsible for heinous crimes, like rape, theft and murder.

The group was also famous for robbing foreign nationals because there was a belief that they kept money in their houses.

“Crime has always been in this area but, in the winter, it becomes worse and you can’t even be at your gate at 10pm. When you come back from the tavern, they follow you and if you don’t have any valuables with you, they undress you just to humiliate you,” John said.

The Star understands that community members watched the group of boys scream and burn to death, on a piece of land that is mostly used for soccer and rallies.

Police were present at the sight of the executions, but were warned not to get close.

“There were crowds of us and the police could not get close to them as they would have to go through the community and the community was upset,” John said.

The mother of a 21-year-old boy that was necklaced, Patricia Seabi said she was shocked to see that her son was naked before he was burnt, raising questions of what happened to him before he died.

“It’s my son, I carried him for nine months, it is painful,” she said.

The local councillor of the area told reporters that there was a challenge of crime in the area.

He said there was still no certainty if the group of boys were the ones that were terrorising the community.

There have been past incidents of mob justice in the area, a prominent example being in 2018.

Police spokesperson Kay Makhubela said police were investigating several cases of murder and attempted murder. He said no arrests had been made. Makhubela refused to disclose which hospital the surviving young men were taken to.

It is understood that one boy was able to escape the angry mob and is in hiding.

The Star

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