Beheading suspects back in court

July 2016. SHADY BUSINESS: Stanley Mohlake , left, and Edward Raatji have been charged with murder after they were found selling a woman’s head wrapped in newspapers in Polokwane. Pic: Sandile Ndlovu. © Sowetan
July 2016. SHADY BUSINESS: Stanley Mohlake , left, and Edward Raatji have been charged with murder after they were found selling a woman’s head wrapped in newspapers in Polokwane. Pic: Sandile Ndlovu. © Sowetan

One of two men accused beheading a Limpopo woman and burning her body opted not to apply for bail at the Mokerong magistrate’s court in Mahwelereng on Wednesday.

Stanley Mahlake‚ who appeared with co accused Edward Raatji‚ told the court through his lawyer that he would not apply for bail.

Both men were charged with murder after police found them in possession of a woman’s head wrapped in newspapers near a taxi rank in Polokwane over a week ago.

Presiding magistrate Charity Kekana informed Mahlake that he would remain in custody until his next court appearance on 8 September since he had declined to make a bail application.

Raatji’s lawyer‚ however‚ informed the court that his client did want to apply for bail. Kekana said Raatji would get an opportunity to do so after the lunch adjournment.

The pair had appeared before the Polokwane magistrates court a day earlier where it was decided that their case be transferred to Mahwelereng.

The question of which court should have jurisdiction was raised after police linked the severed head to the burned body of a woman discovered in Mapela outside Mokopane.

The public gallery was packed to overflowing with angry residents‚ many demanding that the court not grant Raatji bail.

The incident sparked fury among Mapela residents and prompted the burning of houses belonging to the parents of the accused at the weekend.

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