Killer cops go to jail

Riot Hlatshwayo

Riot Hlatshwayo

Two Mpumalanga policemen were sentenced to 25 and 23 years imprisonment respectively in the Pretoria high court on Tuesday.

Constables Mlungisi Charity Mtembu, 29, and Mthunzi Light Mabila, 35, were convicted of murder and attempted murder in the Nelspruit circuit court last week.

"The sentences will play a big role in teaching other members [of the SAPS] to act according to the law when they shoot someone," Captain Leonard Hlathi said on Wednesday.

The two constables, from the Kanyamazane police station, shot two unarmed men they claimed to be suspects in 2003.

Tshepo Mokoena died at the scene after he was shot ten times while Sifiso Shiba, a student, died at a hospital.

Judge Eberhard Bertelsmann found, during the conviction, that Shiba might have lived if not for the gross negligence of the hospital staff.

An "emergency" operation that could have saved Mokoena's life was only performed 18 hours after he had been admitted.

Mtembu is accused of giving police uniforms to criminals and will still appear in court on charges of armed robbery.