The High Court of South Africa, Gauteng Local Division, Johannesburg, has acquitted four women on charges of murder and possession of drugs.
Tshegofatso Moremane, Margaret Koaile, Portia Mmola and Gontse Tlhoele were accused of killing Prince Lethukuthula Zulu were, however, found guilty on the charge of theft.
National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) regional spokesperson Phindi Mjonondwane said that on November 6, 2020, the Zulu prince’s body was discovered by security guards at his residential complex in Northworld, Johannesburg.
“His friend, Nkosi Msimang, was found unconscious in his room. Prior to the ordeal, Zulu and his friend Msimang went to an entertainment establishment in Randburg. They met the accused and were informed that they were celebrating Moremane’s birthday. The celebrations went on, until they decided to go to Zulu’s place of residence to continue with the celebration,” Mjonondwane said.
The accused left the deceased and Msimang unconscious, but stole house items before fleeing the scene.
Police were called to the scene by a neighbour.
Msimang woke and was disoriented, but Zulu was declared dead on the scene.
Mjonondwane said police investigated and linked the accused to the crime by DNA found there, and the women were arrested and some of the stolen items recovered.
“The police also found tablets on Mmola that were used to drug Msimang. The cause of death was said to be drug-related.”
The court found that the state failed to prove the source of the drugs that were found to have been ingested by the deceased, and could not prove that any of the women were found to be in possession of drugs,” added Mjonondwane.
According to Mjonondwane, the state further failed to prove that the deceased involuntarily took the cocaine, and the women were therefore acquitted on the murder and possession of drugs charge.
“The NPA will study the judgment and communicate further. The court postponed the case to October 6 for sentencing.”