Court hears of mother’s anguish on being told her daughter had been killed as part of a ritual
Karabo Mokoena’s sister‚ Bontle‚ on Tuesday detailed how her mother broke down when she was told by police that her daughter’s on-again-off-again boyfriend‚ Sandile Mantsoe‚ had confessed to killing her daughter as part of a ritual.
Testifying in the High Court in Johannesburg‚ Bontle said her mother had been called into a room by a female officer after they had interrogated Mantsoe‚ who before then had denied seeing Mokoena.
Bontle said she suddenly heard her mother screaming in the room.
“Police said Sandile had said he had sacrificed Karabo and… that he would take us to where the body was‚” said Bontle.
“They told us that Sandile was involved in some business and in order for his business to succeed‚ he needed to sacrifice someone. That sacrifice was Karabo‚” she added.
The body‚ which had been badly charred‚ had already been found and removed by the police. It had lain in the government mortuary for days on end.
This evidence had been submitted during Mantsoe’s unsuccessful bail application in the Johannesburg Magistrate’s Court last year.
The court had been told that Mantsoe and Karabo had entered into a ritual to boost his business dealings. The court had also been told the couple had gotten matching crucifix tattoos as part of the ritual.
The magistrate’s court heard that when the pair broke up‚ Mantsoe’s business allegedly suffered and in order to break the tie and save his business‚ he needed to kill her.
Mantsoe denied these allegations at the time‚ saying he had also been assaulted by the police officers who had interrogated him.
His trial was postponed to Wednesday when the fourth state witness was to be called.
The forex trader is standing trial for brutally murdering his 22-year-old girlfriend in April last year. The married father of three who is estranged from his wife claimed however that he had come home from a business meeting to find she had committed suicide in his Sandton apartment.
He did not specify how she had died.
Sandile claimed that out of fear and panic that he would be blamed for the death of his on-again-off-again girlfriend‚ he had disposed of her body. He drenched it in pool acid and petrol‚ put a tyre around it and set it alight.
A post-mortem failed to deduce what had killed Mokoena as her body was too badly burnt.
Mantsoe faces charges of premeditated murder‚ defeating the ends of justice and assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm.
He has pleaded not guilty to the charges.