The two suspects are alleged to be stock thieves and “it is suspected that the deceased could have spotted them on the fateful day”
SENEKAL – Two suspects have been arrested in connection to the murder of 21-year-old Free State farm manager Brandon Horner, police confirmed on Sunday.
The two were arrested by Senekal detectives at Fateng tse Ntho in Paul Roux on Saturday.
Blood-stained clothes and shoes were found, and these will be taken in for forensic tests, police spokesperson Brigadier Motantsi Makhele said.
“The two men are alleged to be stock thieves and it is suspected that the deceased could have spotted them on that fateful day,” said Makhele.
Horner was found tied to a pole at an open space situated at De Rots farm on Friday, at about 6.30am.
According to reports, police had received a call from other farmers reporting the attack at De Rots farm. Upon their arrival police found Horner, who was declared dead on the scene, suffered injuries to his head and face. A knife was seized from the scene and his Toyota Hilux was later found with blood stains. The vehicle had been abandoned near Duikfontein farm in Paul Roux.
The DA on Sunday welcomed the speedy response by the SAPS in this case, and said the party is hoping for an equally speedy investigation, trial and a conviction.
“Our rural communities in the Free State are being preyed upon by stock thieves and farm attackers, and this cannot go unpunished. A message must be sent through these speedy arrests and follow-up action by our criminal justice system that our society will not tolerate the continuation of the war against our agricultural and rural communities,” said Leona Kleynhans, DA MPL in the Free State Legislature.
Agriculture, Land Reform, and Rural Development Minister Thoko Didiza on Saturday expressed shock at Horner’s brutal killing and condemned “this senseless killing with the contempt it deserves”.
“I urge law enforcement agencies to leave no stone unturned in their investigation and arrest of the culprits,” Didiza said in a statement on Saturday.