Tebogo Msimanga |
The High Court of South Africa in Johannesburg sentenced five men to a collective 150 years imprisonment for robbery with aggravating circumstances, two counts of murder, four counts of attempted murder and two counts of unlawful possession of firearm and ammunition on Friday,01 October 2021.
Mfuneleni Langa (40), Simo Khanyile (30), Nkosenhle Nxumalo (20), Msawenkosi Sibiya (29) and Thulani Sithole (27) were convicted on 30 September 2021 for robbing Shoprite Supermarket at Golden Highway, next to Lenasia on 19 June 2018 at gunpoint.
National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) Gauteng Spokesperson Phindi Mjonondwane said the court heard that on 19 June 2018, the accused entered the supermarket and accosted employees and patrons. “They further demanded that the store manager should open the cash office, whilst some of them were on the floor robbing cash, airtime vouchers and other personal belongings from patrons and employees”.
One of the patrons resisted and wanted to leave the store when he was shot at and died at the scene.
Mjonondwane added that a second person, a security company owner, died in hospital as a result of the gunshot wounds. “Four more other patrons were shot at the parking lot as the accused were making their way out and were lucky to escape the ordeal, with gunshot wounds.”
The Senior State Advocate, Monde Mbaqa argued that the accused acted in promotion of a common purpose in committing these offences “and therefore the actions of each of them should be attributed to all of them.” He further argued that all deceased were killed in a senseless and ruthless manner, despite the fact that they went shopping and had no control of Shoprite finances.
The National Prosecuting Authority welcomed the sentence.