Sat. Jul 20th, 2024

Murderer pastor gets life behind bars for murder

By Vaseline Jun10,2024

On August 7, 2021, Thabiso Lethube Masie and a friend were driving from Shikiming village when they came across Selowa-Makhotoka and a friend pretending that their vehicle had broken down and needed help. Masie knew Selowa-Makhotoka and stopped her car. Masie was shot five times by Selowa-Makhotoka. She was rushed to hospital where she succumbed to her injuries, said Mashudu Malabi-Dzhangi, spokesperson for the NPA.

“After shooting Masie, SelowaMakhotoka fled the scene. In an attempt to conceal his actions, he instructed his friend to deceive the police about his identity and clean the deceased’s vehicle to remove possible fingerprints and gun residue using methylated spirits. The friend was later turned into a state witness under Section 204,” said Malabi-Dzhangi.

Also read: ‘Prophet of doom’ remains in custody after murder

Selowa-Makhotoka was on the run until he was arrested two months later at a gas station near Polokwane. In aggravating the sentence, lawyer Muneiwa Ratshibvumo argued that contract killings have become very widespread in communities and harsh punishments are warranted. She further submitted that there were no substantial and compelling circumstances that justified a deviation from the prescribed minimum sentence to send a clear message to other potential criminals.

“In sentencing, Justice Maake Francis Kganyago stated that the deceased was murdered by a person she trusted. “The court further noted that Selowa-Makhotoka was an evil man hiding behind a pulpit, a wolf disguising himself in a sheepskin,” Malabi-Dzhangi said. Selowa-Makhotoka was sentenced to life imprisonment for murder, five years for illegal possession of a firearm, two years for possession of ammunition and one year for attempting to defeat the ends of justice. The Director of Public Prosecutions, Advocate Ivy Thenga, congratulated Ratshibvumo and Investigating Officer Eric Mathebula of Mokwakwaila Police Station.

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