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Three Zimbabwean men remanded in custody for alleg...

Three Zimbabwean men remanded in custody for allegedly killing German tourist


A 74-year-old German tourist was robbed and brutally murdered after he gave a lift and befriended a hitchhiker who later teamed up with two other assailants. Picture: SAPS

Three Zimbabwean nationals, Jan Thabonga Moshabi, 36, Abstein Madzvimbo, 22, and Thomas Moyo, 39, were remanded in custody when they appeared before the Northam Magistrates’ Court on allegations of killing a German tourist.

The trio allegedly assaulted, robbed and killed 74-year-old German tourist, Herman Gunter Friedrich Westphal at Northam, in Limpopo.

Moshabi, Madzvimbo, and Moyo also face additional charges of contravening the Immigration Act, according to Limpopo spokesperson for the National prosecuting Authority, Mashudu Malabi-Dzhangi.

“The deceased was on a tour from Botswana on Friday (February 23) and drove into South Africa in a Toyota sedan motor vehicle and arrived at Lephalale in Waterberg District on Saturday morning,” said Malabi-Dzhangi.

Along the way, Westphal offered an unknown male hitchhiker a lift, and as the two travelled, the tourist requested helping in securing accommodation around North West Province, where he would settle briefly before he could proceed with his tour across South Africa.

On arrival at the said accommodation, in Moruleng, the NPA said the hitchhiker suggested they pass by a liquor outlet where they had a few drinks.

“That’s when the suspect informed his two friends about (Westphal). The accused and his two accomplices drove with the unsuspecting victim to Moshabi’s place. Upon arrival, they tied him up and started to assault him while demanding his bank account pin code,” said Malabi-Dzhangi.

They also searched the German, and took an undisclosed amount of money from him, and other valuables.

“The three suspects removed the vehicle’s number plates and drove with the victim while assaulting him to Northam, using a gravel road. When they reached a certain farm where the suspects dragged the victim from the vehicle and dumped him in the bushes,” said Malabi-Dzhangi.

During the night, security officials noticed the “suspicious” vehicle, without number plates, parked on the farm.

The security officers stopped to investigate, and that is when they noticed Moshabi’s bloodstained t-shirt, and police were immediately notified.

Moshabi was then arrested at the scene and later police discovered Westphal’s body in the nearby bushes.

The two other suspects were arrested in North West Province later that evening. They were allegedly found in possession of some of the deceased tourist’s belongings.

The case against Moshabi, Madzvimbo, and Moyo was postponed to March 13 for bail applications and the trio will remain in custody.

The three are represented by Legal Aid lawyers.

Previously, provincial commissioner of police in Limpopo Province, Lieutenant General Thembi Hadebe commended police for the swift arrest of the suspected trio. - IOL


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