The High Court of South Africa Free State Division, sitting in Bloemfontein has sentenced Molefi Molise and Keletsang Martha Motladile, for the murder of the two relatives of Motladile. The state’s case is derived from an incident on 23 March 2019, when Lesang Sarah Motladile and her son Bongani Goodwill Motladile, were shot and killed by unknown persons using automatic rifles in their home in the Ramakgari Location near the town of Thaba Nchu in the Free State Province.

The police began their investigations and continued until Molise was arrested in Fouriesburg, and the R1 automatic rifle as well as other guns were discovered in possession of the accused. The rifle was taken for ballistics, and it came back positive for the two murders, it also came back positive for the murder of Ernest Mokhele, who had been killed on 26 January 2019, in the town of Botshabelo, near Bloemfontein, after the accused demanded the keys to his Spots Utility Vehicle. The son of Ernest Mokhele was also arrested as a suspect for orchestrating the murder of his father but was acquitted by the court on evidence.

After the arrest of Molise, the police investigations continued to link the two incidents together where three people had lost their lives. The police forensic investigations connected Keletsang Motladile, as having hired Molise to kill her two relatives as she had life policies/insurances worth R347 000, on her two relatives. The investigations also proved that the accused was paid an amount of R29 000, to kill the two. Molefi Molise was charged with attempted robbery with aggravating circumstances, attempted murder, three counts of murder, possession of a semi-automatic rifle without a licence, possession of ammunition, and possession of a prohibited firearm. Keletsang Martha Motladile was charged with two counts of murder of her two relatives.

In aggravation, State Advocate Dansi Mpemvane argued for the court not to deviate from prescribed sentences for such heinous crimes. And that there were no substantial and compelling circumstances. That these murders were senseless, premeditated, and callous. The accused did not take into consideration that the deceased had a right to life and protection when he killed them. That the accused were motivated by greed even taking the lives of family members. That Molise showed no remorse, as he continued on his killing spree, taking three innocent victims. The accused robbed the deceased of their future and the enjoyment of all other rights. The accused did not belong in society, and the court should impose life imprisonment for both accused.

In sentencing, the High Court sentenced Molefi Molise to life imprisonment for the three counts of murder, 7 years for attempted robbery with aggravating circumstances, 12 years imprisonment for attempted murder, 25 years imprisonment for possession of automatic rifle without a licence, 15 years possession of a semi-automatic rifle, 12 years for ammunition for an automatic rifle and 3 years for ammunition for a semi-automatic rifle. Keletsang Martha Motladile was sentenced to 30 years on each count of murder, an effective term of 60 years and the sentences are to run consecutively.

The National Prosecuting Authority acknowledges the work of the prosecution as well as key role players within the South African Police Service in ensuring that these perpetrators are successfully prosecuted and receive befitting sentences.

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