Eight farm robbery suspects arrested, as police search for killers of KZN farmer in separate incident

25 April 2021 - 12:16
By Staff Reporter
A KwaZulu-Natal farmer died after being stabbed during a robbery on Thursday
Image: 123rf/Igor Stevanovic A KwaZulu-Natal farmer died after being stabbed during a robbery on Thursday

KwaZulu-Natal police are investigating the death and robbery of a Karkloof farmer who was stabbed several times on Thursday.

Trevor Murphy, owner of Wendover Farm on Karkloof Road died en route to hospital after he was stabbed repeatedly by three robbers. They first overpowered a farmworker and tied him up before breaking into the house and attacking Murphy.

DA MPL Chris Pappas said the Mooi-uMngeni community was “saddened and angered” by Murphy’s death.

“Security reports indicate that three suspects fled the scene in a white Ford Ranger. The suspects gained entry to the premises by cutting the fence and tying up a staff member before stabbing Trevor Murphy. He unfortunately succumbed to his injuries last night [Thursday]. A number of items were stolen including a television, laptops, cellphones and a hi-fi.”

He said this was the second incident in the area in the past few months.

“It is clear that SAPS must look into this area as a potential hotspot for farm-related crimes and deploy the necessary resources to protect our farmers and farm workers. To date, the provincial government has paid lip service to the safety of rural and farming communities. Little to nothing has been done to actively fight against crime in rural areas.”

SAPS KwaZulu-Natal spokesperson Capt Nqobile Gwala told TimesLIVE that investigations were ongoing.

In a separate farm robbery, police arrested eight suspects and recovered 11 firearms after an incident in Mooi River on Friday.

Police said the victim was in his office at a Mooi River farm when two vehicles with five men arrived.

“The men entered his office and held him up at gunpoint. They robbed him of his jewellery, laptops, a watch, cellphone, firearms and the contents of the safe. The victim’s legs and hands were tied before the suspects fled the scene in their vehicles,” said Brig Jay Naicker.

Naicker said one of the suspects' vehicles was spotted travelling at a high speed on the N3 freeway towards Pietermaritzburg. Police officers from Mooi River SAPS, the Pietermaritzburg K9 Unit and Pietermaritzburg Public Order Police together with security officers from Magma pursued the vehicle.

“Following a high-speed chase, the team were able to intercept the vehicle at Camperdown where five suspects including a female were placed under arrest.

The suspects were found in possession of five firearms as well as other items belonging to the victim. The suspects' vehicle was impounded for further investigation.”

He said after further investigation, the team proceeded to KwaMashu where three suspects were arrested while a second vehicle as well as six firearms were seized. The men were found in possession of jewellery and other items taken during the robbery.

The eight suspects, who are aged between 24 and 51, are expected to appear in court soon.