five in court over brutal KILLINGS

EMOTIONS ran high yesterday at the Rustenburg magistrate's court when five people appeared for the murder of a businesswoman and her family.

EMOTIONS ran high yesterday at the Rustenburg magistrate's court when five people appeared for the murder of a businesswoman and her family.

Protesting residents were informed by a court official that the case had been delayed because senior prosecutors were considering what to do after the accused had allegedly confessed to the crime yesterday.

Sibongile Mabaso, 27, Goodboy Mabaso, 34, Thabo Dikane, 18, Barnard Dikane, 30, and a 17-year-old youth, who cannot be named are accused of the murder of Miriam Khoza, 45, her two teenage sons Karabo and Tsaona, her brother-in-law Daniel Karfhia, 46, and her nephew.

The five were found murdered at their home in Lethabong, North West, on Christmas Day.

Khoza and the three teenage boys had been strangled, while Karfhia had been shot in the head.

When the case was ready to be heard residents were ordered to leave the courtroom as the matter was to be heard in camera.

"We want to hear why they killed Miriam," one of them shouted.

Family spokesperson Frank Ntiro said the relatives of the Khoza family had felt humiliated by the decision not to allow them into the court and had left.

He said that Khoza and her family would be buried in Mozambique today.

The case was postponed to January 5 for the accused to apply for bail and for legal aid.

The accused were charged with five counts of murder, house robbery and for possession of an unlicensed firearm.

Irate Lethabong community members protested outside the court room and called for the court not to grant the five bail.

"She (Khoza) did not deserve to die in this way," said protester Anna Mere.

She said that Khoza had always been willing to help the needy.

North West premier Maureen Modiselle condemned the murders.

"The murderers must face the full wrath of our criminal justice system," she said.

Modiselle urged the residents of Lethabong to remain calm.

"Allow the law enforcement agencies to conduct their investigations."

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