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Duo remanded in custody after being arrested for brutal murder of Free State cop

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The two accused people were arrested after the lifeless body of Constable Itumeleng Tladi (26), who was stationed at the Crime Intelligence Unit based in Vrede, was found lying on the side of the road in a farm with several gunshot wounds to the head

A man in a prison cell
Two accused people, Makhosazana Falicity Mfuphi aged 30 and Sinethemba Klaas aged 28 have appeared before the Vrede Magistrates’ Court following the brutal killing of a SAPS crime intelligence unit member in Free State. File Picture

Pretoria – Two people, Makhosazana Falicity Mfuphi aged 30 and Sinethemba Klaas aged 28 have appeared before the Vrede Magistrates’ Court on charges of murder and armed robbery, following the brutal killing of a SAPS crime intelligence unit member whose body was discovered last week with several gunshot wounds in the head.

“On Friday, 22 October 2021, the body of deceased, Constable Itumeleng Tladi (26), who was stationed at Crime Intelligence based in Vrede, was found lying on the side of the road in a farm near Vrede. He was found with several gunshot wounds to the head. His private vehicle was found abandoned five kilometres away from where the body was recovered,” said Hawks Free State provincial spokesperson Captain Christopher Singo.

“A crime intelligence-led investigation conducted by the Hawks’ serious organised crime investigation team based in Bethlehem culminated to the arrest of the accused on Friday, 22 October 2021.”

Singo said when the duo accused of murdering the police officer appeared in court on Monday, they were remanded until Friday for a formal bail application.

Earlier this month, a member of the South African Police Service, attached to the Limpopo provincial crime intelligence unit, 58-year-old Lieutenant Colonel Tshitereke Freddie Masuvhelele, was killed during an alleged business robbery.

Masuvhelele was gunned down in the alleged business robbery that occurred at Masuvhelele Enterprise, situated at Malonga village under the Vuwani policing area, according to Limpopo SAPS spokesperson Brigadier Motlafela Mojapelo.

“It is alleged that the deceased’s two sons were about to close the shop when two unknown male suspects entered and pointed the duo with firearms and robbed them of a cash amount of money as well as Samsung Galaxy A20 cellphone while the deceased was behind the shop busy feeding the cattle,” said Mojapelo.

“Afterwards, he apparently saw his sons running away while screaming and decided to go inside the shop to investigate and subsequently met one of the three suspects who was waiting outside. The suspect reportedly shot him several times.”

After the robbery, the assailants fled the scene in a white VW Polo, with an unknown Gauteng province registration, as well as a Toyota Run-X.

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