Residents fume over murder of 'prostitute'

Mhlaba Memela

Mhlaba Memela

Residents of Newcastle in northern KwaZulu-Natal have threatened to take the law into their own hands if the man linked to the murder of a suspected prostitute is granted bail.

The 22-year-old man is alleged to have picked up the 25-year-old woman and taken her to his workplace. The woman was then strangled and her corpse stuffed into a rubbish bin.

Police spokesman Shooz Magudulela said the suspect called a friend to help him dispose of the woman's body.

"The friend alerted the police who went to the scene and found the woman's body inside a sealed container. The suspect was then arrested," he said.

Magudulela said the man allegedly picked the woman up in the city centre on Monday night.

"We are still investigating what exactly transpired between the two that led to her murder. But we are hoping to get a witness who might help us," he said.

Mayor Lungile Dube said the murder has shocked Newcastle.

"Our town is normally peaceful. It's embarrassing and we fear this might create problems."

Resident Rudol Mohamed said what the man did posed a threat to the peace of the town.

"Even if she was a prostitute she did not deserve to die. People might take the law into their own hands if this man gets bail," he said.

The suspect is expected to appear in court soon.