Former cop sentenced to six life terms for murders

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A former police officer has been sentenced by the Pietermaritzburg High Court to six life terms after being convicted on six counts of murder.

Lungisani Arnold Mgaga‚ 30 also received an additional 50 years’ imprisonment for five counts of attempted murder.

“The accused has been in custody since 2015 after his arrest and was found in possession of his service pistol that was used during the commission of these crimes. His co-accused‚ Themba Mvelase‚ 32‚ who was sentenced last year‚ is already serving life imprisonment for five counts of murder and ten years for five counts of attempted murder‚” said KwaZulu-Natal police spokesman Lieutenant-Colonel Thulani Zwane.

Zwane said that on October 11 20114 at about 5.10pm‚ a Mercedes Benz vehicle with five occupants was travelling on Pieters road when it was attacked by unknown suspects who opened fire‚ killing one person who was identified as Happy Hlomuka‚ 30.

“Four other occupants were wounded and taken to hospital for treatment. In less than an hour later‚ another shooting was reported at a car wash‚ D Section at Ezakheni‚ where five people were shot and killed while at the car wash. One victim was wounded during the shooting and was taken to hospital for treatment.

“The deceased were identified as Muzi Dlamini‚ Sfundo Dlamini‚ Mlungisi Dlamini Menzi Mvelase and Makhekhe Mathebula. All these cases were opened at Ezakheni police station and the provincial task team was tasked to vigorously investigate these incidents.

“After an intensive investigation‚ the accused who was based in Gauteng was identified and arrested for both incidents. He was charged with six counts of murder and five counts of attempted murder‚” Zwane said.

He added that the former policeman was also the subject of other murder cases in Kwazulu-Natal and would appear in court again soon to face these charges.

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