Home Crime Stepson sentenced for killing his stepmother at her business premises

Stepson sentenced for killing his stepmother at her business premises

by Thys Khiba
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Former police officer sentenced to 10 years imprisonment

By Thys Khiba – The High Court of South Africa; North West Division sitting at the Vryburg Regional Court, sentenced Joel Tuma Phatudi (40) and Lebogang Archibald Serei (40), to life imprisonment for the murder of Serei’s stepmother, Kgomotso Serei.

They were sentenced to a further 35 years on two counts of robbery, possession of a firearm, and possession of ammunition.

North West NPA spokesperson Henry
Mamothame confirmed the sentence is not expected to run concurrently and two of their co-accused were acquitted on all charges.

Their conviction comes after an incident that occurred on 25 May 2017, at the business premises of the deceased, where she owned a funeral parlour.

The court heard that Serei had instructed one of her stepmother’s employees, to lock all doors except the garage door.

This he said before this employee noticed three men standing not far from the business premises.

The three suspicious men later entered the premises through the garage door wearing balaclavas and their ordered the cashier to kneel on the floor before wrapping her face with a cloth,” said North West police spokesperson Brigadier Sabata Mokgwabone.

Mokgwabone indicated the three men then demanded her cellphone before proceeding to the deceased, who was also inside the premises.

Joel Tumo Phatudi was identified as the culprit who turned the gun on to the deceased and shot her in the head.

The three then took two cellphones and a handbag belonging to the deceased before fleeing the scene.

Investigations by SAPS members revealed that Lebogang Sereihad approached one of the employees to find him a hitman to murder his stepmother.

A witness who refused the proposition to murder also provided the police with a statement confirming that he was approached by the employee to execute the murder,” said Mokgwabone.

The same employee also confirmed that Lebogang gave him money to deliver to Phatudi, after the funeral of his stepmother.

In Court:

The state prosecutor, Adv Cain Nontenjwa, argued the court not to deviate from the prescribed minimum sentence as there were no compelling circumstances to do so.

Judge Samkelo Gura, agreed with the state and indicated that the two murdered the deceased to take over her business.

The court heard that Lebogang wanted to inherit the business following his father’s passing.

The Director of Public Prosecutions in the North West, Dr Rachel Makhari together with Provincial Commissioner, Lieutenant General Sello Kwena, lauded Adv Nontenjwa and Detective Sergeant Lesley Kgatisang for a collaboration that resulted in a successful conviction,” said Mamothame.



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