Pirates goalie hijacked, kidnapped two years after similar incident

Melusi Buthelezi during his time at TS Galaxy.
Melusi Buthelezi during his time at TS Galaxy.
Image: Philip Maeta/Gallo images

Orlando Pirates footballer Melusi Buthelezi was hijacked and kidnapped on the East Rand on Thursday evening but is now home “safe and unharmed”, police confirmed.

The goalkeeper was snatched at about 8.40pm in zone 4 in Thokoza.

“The victim was sitting with his friends on the street when three unknown men approached them,” police spokesperson Col Dimakatso Nevhuhulwi said.

“The suspects robbed all victims of their cellphones before forcefully taking one of the victims and driving off with his vehicle.

“The victim has since returned unharmed this morning [Friday],” police said.

Nevhuhulwi confirmed that a case of hijacking and kidnapping had been opened for investigation and that no arrests had been made yet.

Pirates spokesperson Thandi Merafe told Soccer Laduma Buthelezi was “safe and unharmed,” saying he should be “given space to recover from this traumatic ordeal”.

This is the second time the 26-year-old player has been affected by crime. 

In 2022, Buthelezi was stabbed during a car hijacking in Soweto.

His former club TS Galaxy at the time said the incident happened at a filling station. The Nquthu-born star and his brother were returning from visiting their ailing mother when armed thugs pounced. Buthelezi's brother was also stabbed.


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