BLOEMFONTEIN: Four of the five men convicted of killing a police officer and his friend were sentenced to two life terms each for two counts of murder and additional 15 years for robbery with aggravating circumstances. Free State High Court Acting Judge Collen Nenkosie sentenced Paul Setoromo (33), Tumelo Ralejoe (27), Teboho Mokoena (24) and Teboho Monyane (29) to life imprisonment for killing Warrant Officer Koos Mokoena and another life imprisonment for killing Andile Rangana on 03 August 2019 in Clarens.

They were also slapped with an additional 15 years for robbery with aggravating circumstances. The fifth accused, Pule Rasunyane (27) was sentenced to 20 years for each count of murder and additional 10 years for robbery with aggravating circumstances.

Mokoena was sitting with Andile Rangana at Rangana’s house when the accused arrived, bought liquor, and started drinking. The accused went outside and returned armed with knives. Mokoena was overpowered by Rangana, and the other accused tied his hands and feet with a duct tape. They searched him and his personal belongings, including ATM card were taken.

The accused and Rangana covered Mokoena with a blanket, put him in his Isuzu bakkie and drove with him to Golden Gate National Park. Upon arrival at the Golden Gate, Mokoena was taken out of the bakkie and Rangana was instructed to shoot him but he refused. Rangana was shot and killed for refusing to kill Mokoena and Mokoena was also shot and killed by the accused.

After killing the deceased, the accused used Mokoena’s ATM card to pay for fuel at Golden Gate filling station and drove to Ladybrand where they used the same card to by liquor. They changed the registration numbers of the Isuzu from Free State number to Lesotho government number and crossed to Lesotho where they sold the bakkie for R40 000. The bakkie was later recovered in Lesotho.

In aggravation, State Prosecutor, Advocate Lucky Bontes told the court that the accused killed the deceased in a cold blooded manner and they failed to show any remorse. “The murder of the deceased was premeditated because even after they robbed them of their belongings they still killed them. The sad part is that Mokoena is leaving behind his wife and two children. His children were studying at a private school, but they are now at a public school because the wife could not afford the fees of the private school”, said Bontes.

Judge Nenkosie sentenced Setoromo, Ralejoe, Mokoena and Monyane to an effective life imprisonment while Rasunyane will serve an effective 20 years imprisonment. The accused were declared unfit to possess a firearm.

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