7 warders deny role in deaths

Dudu Busani

Dudu Busani

The Krugersdorp prison warders accused of beating three prisoners to death deny any wrongdoing.

Johan Kok, defence counsel for Petrus Mkhwanazi, Sandile Kleinbooi, Cleopas Mfusi and Donald Letsoamotse, told the South Gauteng high court that his clients denied any involvement in the killings.

Regan Rudidge and Simphiwe Shabangu are defended by another advocate.

"Accused six [Letsoamotse] says he arranged for a trolley to take the injured prisoners to the sick bay with accused number two," Kok said.

He said that Letsoamotse stated he had seen injured prisoners lying in an office after a fight between two prison gangs. The warder then asked Kleinbooi to help look for weapons. Mfusi and Mkhwanazi were serving lunch to other prisoners.

Elias Motswasele, the inmate and member of the 28's gang, dismissed the warders' version as lies, saying they spent "three hours" beating up the three prisoners who died.

lThandani Nxumalo Zamubuntu Maqhina and Simphiwe Tshabalala died in hospital a few hours later.