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Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Alleged truck hijackers and cop killers appear in court

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Two suspects who have been linked to the murder of Warrant Officer Johannes Cornelius du Randt appeared in the Frankfort Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday.

Fikile Du Preez Ramotsoenyane, 42, and Nkululeko Antonio, 47, were arrested at the weekend after they were found to be in possession of a police vehicle and other SAPS attire.

Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (Hawks) spokesperson Colonel Katlego Mogale said one of the accused made a brief appearance in the Vanderbiljpark Magistrate’s Court for possession of stolen property, possession of police uniforms and possession of unlicensed ammunition.

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She said he later appeared in a different court for the murder of du Randt.

truck hijacker fikiledu preez ramotsoenyane
Accused one Fikile Du Preez Ramotsoenyane Photo: Hawks

Du Randt was murdered last week as he was tailing a hijacked truck at the time.

He was found dead with four bullet wounds to his body.

“The duo was arrested by the Fezile Dabi District Trio Task Team during the past weekend. Ramotsoenyane was arrested at a residence in Vanderbiljpark, where he was found in possession of a suspected stolen vehicle, an Isuzu bakkie with police markings, police bulletproof vests, police uniforms, and an unlicensed R5 rifle,” Mogale said.

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nkululeko antonio truck hijacker
Accused two Nkululeko Antonio Photo: Hawks

“Antonio was arrested in Soweto on Saturday, June 10, 2023. This is a result of a spate of robberies committed in Cornelia, Free State, including a truck hijacking that occurred on the N3 highway,” she said.

“The matter was then referred to the Hawks’ Serious Organised Crime Investigation based in Bethlehem for further investigation. Preliminary investigations linked the duo to three cases tracing back to the murder of Warrant Officer Cornelius Du Randt.”

Ramotsoenyane is expected back in the Vanderbiljpark Magistrate’s Court on June 19.

The provincial head of the Hawks in the Free State, Major General Mokgadi Bokaba, commended the team led by the Hawks’ Serious Organised Crime team for their success.

“Their tireless work over the weekend in bringing perpetrators to book is appreciated. The team will not rest until all perpetrators are brought to book,” Bokaba said.

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The duo is expected back in the Frankfort Magistrate’s Court on June 20, where both accused are to appoint legal representatives.

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