Grave-in-shack accused may have slain more

The man who allegedly killed his lover and buried her body in a shallow grave in his shack could be having more murder cases, according to his friend.

Samuel Sibeko, 28, of Vlakfontein, south of Johannesburg, appeared briefly yesterday in Protea magistrate's court, Soweto, on charges of murder and defeating the ends of justice.

He told the court that he was previously sentenced to six months for assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.

But there could be more crimes by Sibeko, including murder, according to his friend Sifiso Khumalo, who said he felt deceived by Sibeko because they spent time in the shack since the woman's disappearance.

"We hung out together and I never suspected that she was dead. I asked him where she was and he said she went home," Khumalo told Sowetan at the court yesterday.

Sibeko was arrested on Sunday after community members tipped off the police that he allegedly confessed to murdering the 41-year-old woman.

"Every time we got drunk he would tell us that he killed someone in KwaZulu-Natal and three people in Vlakfontein and threw their bodies into a ditch. We don't know if he was telling the truth or not."

Khumalo added he spent about four days of the first two weeks of July with Sibeko in his shack.

He said he could pick up that the shack smelled heavily of Jeyes Fluid, a disinfectant.

"I asked him about the smell and he said he was spring cleaning. Then I asked him about his girlfriend's whereabouts, this was on a night in July.

"We had been drinking at the local shebeen and went to his shack to finish off our drinks. He became very agitated and dismissed my question by saying she had returned home [in QwaQwa] and that's why he was cleaning."

Khumalo said he would not have guessed that she was buried under the bed.

Faith Mazibuko, Gauteng MEC for community safety, told Sowetan she was aware of the claims that Sibeko could be having other crimes to answer to but said the police were yet to verify the details.

Sibeko's sister, who asked not to be named, told Sowetan her brother was abusive towards her and threatened to kill her.

"He used to verbally abuse me after our parents passed on. In February, he kicked me out of our family home and rented it out and built a shack on the yard.

"He told me that if I didn't move out, I would leave this house as a corpse."

The matter was postponed to August 20 for bail bid.

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