Home South African Six suspects arrested for murder of rapper AKA

Six suspects arrested for murder of rapper AKA

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Police Minister Bheki Cele has announced that six men – some of whom were recently extradited from eSwatini – have been arrested in connection with the murder of South African rapper AKA, who was shot dead outside a Durban restaurant in February last year.

The late rapper Kiernan “AKA” Forbes. Picture: Instagram

POLICE Minister Bheki Cele has announced that six men – some of whom were recently arrested in eSwatini – have been arrested in connection with the murder of South African rapper AKA, who was shot dead outside a Florida Road restaurant in Durban in February last year.

The suspects are due to appear in court on Thursday.

The announcement was made on Tuesday night by the police brass including Cele, national police commissioner General Fannie Masemola and KwaZulu-Natal provincial police commissioner Lieutenant-General Nhlanhla Mkhwanazi at the SA Police Services provincial headquarters in Durban.

Mkhwanazi has led a team of highly-skilled police investigators who have been probing the suspected assassination of the celebrated and multi award-winning rapper AKA, real name Kiernan Forbes.

Supa Mega, as he was known to his fans, was gunned down in Durban’s Florida Road on February 10, 2023, as he was leaving the Wish Restaurant. His friend, celebrity chef Tebello “Tibz” Motsoane, was also murdered.

Cele said the first suspect arrested was apprehended in April last year.

Police management said two of the suspects were brothers from Durban, who were also linked to the murders of Mntimande Kunene, Nhlanhla Ngcobo and Zamokuhle Mkhwanazi-Ngcobo, murders which took place in eManzimtoti and Berea respectively.

Mkhwanazi said the six men arrested included the alleged mastermind, the spotter and the shooter. He said the suspects were linked to the murder including through vehicles and ballistics.

Some of the cars were rented, he said.

AKA’s dad, Tony Forbes, who has been grieving his son and has appeared on a number of podcasts recently, said he believed his son’s murder was a well-funded and planned assassination and that the police were very close to cracking the AKA murder investigation.

He made the comments in early February while speaking with Hazel Mahazard on the Within with Hazel podcast. Tony Forbes also shared how he believed his son’s murder was a well-planned hit.

The arrests of the AKA murder suspects come a year after he was killed.

Earlier this month, national police spokesperson Brigadier Athlenda Mathe revealed publicly that the police had linked identified suspects through their prosecution-driven investigation.

Mathe said some suspects were already in police custody on charges related to other matters while police were “hot on the heels” of other suspects.

On Monday, the Eswatini publication, The Times of Swaziland, reported that the alleged hitmen were from Durban and were arrested by Royal Eswatini Police Service (REPS). They had been renting a flat in Mbabane.

The publication said the two brothers were paid just over R133,000 for their part in the apparent hit.

The men are aged 28 and 29 and have already appeared in an Eswatini court prior to their extradition to South Africa.

The suspects will face charges of murder, conspiracy to commit murder, attempted murder, unlawful possession of firearms and ammunition, and money laundering.

The latest arrests come 11 months after four other suspects were apprehended in March last year at the Erica Square in Belhar in the Western Cape in connection with the murders.

At the time, it was reported that the men were all brought to Durban, however, only one suspect appeared in the dock at the Durban Magistrate’s Court on a charge of car-jacking.

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