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Mpumalanga widow found guilty of murdering husband on Valentine's Day

Mpumalanga widow Simangele Shongwe has been found guilty of murdering her husband in 2017.
Mpumalanga widow Simangele Shongwe has been found guilty of murdering her husband in 2017.
Image: 123rf/ Allan Swart

A Mpumalanga widow has been found guilty of orchestrating her husband’s murder.

Simangele Shongwe was handed a guilty verdict by the Mpumalanga high court last week, said Brig Leonard Hlathi.

Her husband Vusi Mona, a teacher at Zwelisha Primary School, was murdered on Valentine’s Day two years ago.

“Detailed evidence presented in court showed how Mona was kidnapped from his home at Kanyamazane by three men. It is reported that the men stormed into Mona's yard ... ransacked it and demanded cash, as well as firearms,” said Hlathi.

The men took an undisclosed amount of money from him at his home and forced him into his bakkie. They took him to a nearby ATM, where they forced him to withdraw cash from his account.

“Mona never returned home. His lifeless body was later discovered inside his car at Pienaar with a gunshot wound. His hands and feet were also bound with cable ties,” said Hlathi.

Police investigations eventually implicated the grieving widow.

"A thorough investigation conducted by the detectives at Kanyamazane SAPS led to the arrest of Shongwe on March 31 2017," said Hlathi.

"Shongwe was charged with murder, conspiracy to commit murder, kidnapping, as well as robbery with aggravating circumstances."

She is set to be sentenced on January 31 2020.

Mpumalanga police commissioner Lt-Gen Mondli Zuma commended the police for ensuring that the perpetrator was brought to book. “As the police, we are very happy to have such astute members who do not just scratch the surface when conducting their investigations, but go deeper to unearth the truth,” he said.

“These are the kind of members that deserve a pat on the back because they are so devoted to rooting out crime within our society, so that the citizens [can] live in the knowledge that they are safe in the hands of the police.”