The Durban Regional Court sentenced four men: Dumisani Msomi (41), Musawenkosi Mncube (41), Sihle Sibiya (45) and Scelo Vilakazi (38) to various terms of imprisonment for the robbery they committed in September 2020 in the Cato Manor area. On the day of the incident, the complainant was at his business premises when they approached him. They were armed with firearms, and Msomi was dressed in a police uniform. They assaulted the complainant and stole his cash and cellphones, and fled to Pinetown in their vehicle.

About half an hour later, police were patrolling near the Pinetown taxi rank when they noticed that the men’s vehicle did not have a number plate. Upon searching the vehicle, police found a firearm and a police uniform under the seat. They also found two cellphones and cash in a packet. The men were immediately arrested.

In court, the Regional Court Prosecutor Surekha Marimuthu led the complainant’s evidence as well as that of the arresting officers. Marimuthu also led the evidence of cellular phone service providers. This evidence placed the men at the scene of crime and showed their path of travel from Cato Manor to Pinetown, where they were arrested. She also led an ID parade where the complainant pointed out the robbers.

Msomi was sentenced to 12 years imprisonment for robbery, 5 years for unlawful possession of a prohibited firearm, 5 years for unlawful possession of ammunition and 5 years for possessing or receiving a police uniform. The court ruled that the sentences for the firearm-related charges and the police uniform run concurrently resulting in the effective sentence of 17 years imprisonment. Mncube was sentenced to 17 years imprisonment for robbery as he had a previous conviction. Sibiya and Vilakazi were each sentenced to 12 years imprisonment for the robbery.

The NPA welcomes this successful prosecution. We commend the work done by the Prosecutor and investigating teams.

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