Crimes which shook the nation

Karabo Mokoena
Karabo Mokoena

The CCTV video footage of murderer Sandile Mantsoe casually strolling out of his flat while pulling a large bin shocked the nation when it was later discovered that the container was carrying the lifeless body of his girlfriend Karabo Mokoena.

The footage, admitted into evidence during Mantsoe's trial but not previously publicly released, showed how Mantsoe retrieved a wheelie bin from a room near his flat at 9.57pm. Less than 10 minutes later he's captured pulling the clearly heavy bin into a lift.

This was one of the most shocking violent crimes to have been reported in SA this past decade. Sowetan looks at this and other crime stories which also numbed the country in the last 10 years.

Mantsoe, who was found guilty of murdering his girlfriend, Karabo Mokoena, was sentenced to 32 years in prison on May 3 2018.

Mokoena's body had been doused with petrol and set alight in a seemingly desperate but gruesome attempt to dispose of it.

Qualified teacher, Themba Thubane, was sentenced to two life terms and an additional five years in prison for the murders of Gabisile Shabane, 13, who was living with albinism, and her 15 month old cousin Nkosikhona Ngwenya in August 2019.

The two children were abducted from their eMalahleni home in Mpumalanga for muthi purposes. While Gabisile was found buried in a shallow grave in Cullinan, east of Pretoria, Nkosikhona's body was found in a river. He was thrown over a bridge after his abductors realised he had no albinism but a light complexion.

The woman dubbed "the black widow" in the media was sentenced to 15 years in jail for fraud and theft. She had gone on a spending spree, mainly in Benoni, with the credit card of a medical doctor who was found dead in a lodge room in Sasolburg, northern Free State.

Malibyane Maoeng, 30, was not tried for murder even though she had checked into the lodge with Highlands Park FC team doctor, Godfrey Sankubele Dire.

Maoeng's theft rap included Dire's Mercedes-Benz C-Class car found in her possession in Benoni .

A 33-year-old serial rapist was handed one of the country's heaviest sentences with a total of 1,258 years in jail.

In 2019, Bongani Masuku was sentenced to a total of 20 life terms and an additional 758 years for charges including murder, rape, kidnapping, house robbery, robbery and assault.

Masuku's eight-year reign of terror between 2010 and last year was localised in Pretoria's north-western townships such as Soshanguve, Mabopane, Winterveldt and Klipgat, where he and his gang would target young women, rob and rape them.

Lebogang Gift Mokoena was sentenced to 13 life sentences and 340 years in prison in the South Gauteng High Court sitting in Palm Ridge, Ekurhuleni, on Thursday.

In October 2018, the court found Mokoena guilty of 13 counts of rape, nine of kidnapping, nine of robbery with aggravating circumstances, nine of pointing an object that resembles a firearm, two of aiding and abetting someone to commit an offence and one of sexual assault. He raped eight women.

Palesa Madiba went missing following a sleepover at her friend Tshidi Mkhwanazi's home in Phiri, Soweto, on August 9, 2013.

Madiba's body was found two years later buried in Mkhwanazi property. This year Tshidi's uncle, Dumisani Mkhwanazi, was arrested and charged with Madiba's murder and defeating the ends of justice.

Back in 2013, when asked by Madiba's relatives about the whereabouts of their daughter, Mkhwanazi had told them he had last seen her when she left the house on August 12, the Monday after her weekend sleepover.

In August 2004, Limpopo province was shaken by news of the gruesome murder of 10-year old Sello Chokoe of GaMaleka near Polokwane.

Chokoe was hit with a blunt object at a small koppie near his village and his private parts including his ear and arm were harvested.

He died few days later at a hospital in Polokwane. His killers were never arrested.

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