State rejects 'Masoyi Monster's' plea, continues with trial

Mandla Khoza Freelance journalist
Mndawe is accused of killing and burying five women in his yard at Masoyi village, outside Hazyview.
Mndawe is accused of killing and burying five women in his yard at Masoyi village, outside Hazyview.
Image: Thapelo Morebudi

The prosecution in the multiple murder trial against Julius Mndawe, dubbed the “Masoyi Monster”, on Thursday rejected his plea, saying they would rather go to trial.

Mndawe was expected to plead on five counts of murder and concealment of death after the case hit several snags in the Mpumalanga High Court in Mbombela since Tuesday.

Without getting into details of the plea they were presented with, prosecutor Adv Zwelethu Mata said: “The state doesn’t accept the plea of the accused. We therefore as the state decide to continue with the trial.” 

The matter was then postponed to January 31.

Emotions ran high after the matter was postponed, when some of the relatives of the deceased cried uncontrollably.

Mndawe is accused of killing and burying five women in his yard at Masoyi village, outside Hazyview.

He is expected to plead on the murder charges and concealment of deaths.

Mndawe was arrested in July 2019 for the crimes believed to have started a year before, in which he would lure women, telling them that he loves them. He allegedly killed and buried them in shallow graves in his yard. 

His arrest came after he allegedly killed Tokie Tloka, 24, and was linked to her disappearance through Facebook messages after the deceased's sister managed to access her account and saw who she was chatting to prior to her disappearance in 2019. 

After the discovery of Tloka's body, Mndawe then pointed out the graves of teenagers Noxolo Mdluli, 17, Banele Khoza,15, Felicia Ndlovu, 17, and Nomthandazo Mdluli,19. He had planted fruit trees or vegetables on top of the graves of his victims. Three of the decomposed bodies were verified through DNA tests. 

To date, Mdluli and Ndlovu have not been buried as police are still waiting for DNA results from a laboratory in Switzerland because the results they received from a local facility were inconclusive. 

Mndawe has since opted to use state lawyers after changing defence teams several times since his arrest. 

He also abandoned his bail application as he feared for his life. 

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