Three men have been charged with the murder of their friend. Picture: IANS_DL_RPT, IANS

Durban - Three men who allegedly lured their friend over before stabbing him multiple times and burying him are due in court. 

KZN police spokesperson Captain Nqobile Gwala said the victim Mondli Phungula, 38, was asleep at his home on January 25 when he received a call from his friends inviting him to come over to KwaNdayo. 

Gwala said the victim's family became concerned when they couldn't find him in his room the following morning. 

"They initiated a search for their son but he was nowhere to be found and his vehicle was also missing. The matter was reported to Esikhaleni police and a missing persons docket was opened for investigation."

Gwala said police investigating the matter were suspicious after questioning the three friends and kept tabs on them. 

"On Tuesday morning one of the victim’s friend was seen driving the victim’s vehicle at Gobandlovu and police swooped on his residence. They found the victim’s vehicle parked in the yard and when the friend was confronted he admitted to being involved in his disappearance.

"The 23-year-old man told the police that on the day of the incident he and his two friends set a trap for the victim. They dragged him into the bushes before they assaulted and stabbed him multiple times on the chest. 

"They drove to Esikhaleni beach where they buried his body. On Tuesday night the suspect led Esikhaleni police to the beach where Mondli’s body was recovered. The suspect was then arrested and charged with murder."

Gwala said on Wednesday night, just after 11pm police arrested a further two suspects aged 23 and 28 at KwaNdaya Reserve and Nseleni for murder. 

They were also found in possession of the victim belongings. They are expected to appear in the Esikhaleni Magistrate's Court today.

“We are pleased with the breakthrough made by police at Esikhaleni and we know that our justice system will not fail the family. We hope that the recovery of the body and the arrest of the suspects will bring closure the family,” said the KwaZulu-Natal Provincial Commissioner, Lieutenant General Khombinkosi Jula.

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