By Brigadier Selvy Mohlala
A hefty sentence handed down to a 32-year-old man for murder has been welcomed by the Provincial Commissioner of the SAPS in Mpumalanga, Lieutenant General Semakaleng Manamela. Moses Maseko was sentenced by the Mpumalanga Division of the High Court which was sitting in Middleburg today, Tuesday.
The court reached its decision to sentence the accused after it was heard during the trial that on 19 February 2021 the accused committed robbery and stabbed a woman to death in a shack at Dullstroom.
On the same day (19 February 2021), whilst he was taken in for questioning in relation to the murdered woman, he robbed a police officer of his service pistol while driving with him (Maseko).
Immediately after the incident, police launched a manhunt for him and he was arrested following a shocking incident where a certain family in Dullstroom called police, informing them of an armed man found in their house. As police were driving to the scene, Maseko shot himself but he was taken to hospital where he received medical treatment.
Police recovered the state firearm on the scene that day. He was arrested and charged accordingly where he was linked as well as charged for the woman’s murder, robbery incident where it is said that a businessman was robbed of undisclosed amount of cash at gunpoint on 26 February 2021.
The victim closed his tuckshop and took a walk in the street in Dullstroom when Maseko approached him where he held him hostage.
The accused then robbed him of his money before he fled the scene. Maseko was further charged with unlawful possession of firearm and ammunition, house robbery with intention to steal and theft, as well as house robbery with intention unknown to the state hence he was trialed and on Friday, 28 January 2022 Maseko was convicted on the said charges hence his sentence as follows :
– On the count of murder, he was sentenced to life imprisonment.
– On the count of robbery of a firearm, he was slapped with 5 years imprisonment.
– On the count of unlawful possession of firearm, the accused was sentenced to 15 years imprisonment.
– On the count of unlawful possession of ammunition, the accused was sentenced to 12 months imprisonment.
– On the count of house breaking with an intent to steal and theft, he was sentenced to 24 months imprisonment.
– On the count of house breaking with an intent unknown to the state, he was sentenced to 12 months imprisonment.
The court decided that all the sentences will run concurrently with the life sentence, meanwhile he was declared unfit to possess a firearm.
The Provincial Commissioner of the SAPS in Mpumalanga, Lieutenant General Semakaleng Manamela has lauded the sterling work displayed by a team of Investigators, the Prosecution, as well as the Judiciary.
“The public will sleep better knowing that the state has locked up one murderer behind bars for a very long time. We are hopeful that this sentence will encourage our communities to continue to support the efforts of fighting against crime by providing valuable information to authorities. ” concluded the General.