Bafana Mahungela, the prime suspect charged with the murder of Sandton schoolteacher Kirsten Kluyts, was denied bail by the Alexandra regional court on Friday.
This decision comes after Mahungela spent Christmas behind bars, awaiting his bail outcome. Magistrate Syta Prinsloo stated that the accused and his representatives failed to provide sufficient evidence to justify granting him bail.
Prinsloo further explained that the state had presented prima facie evidence of premeditated murder and robbery, strengthening the case against Mahungela.
Although he pleaded innocent and did not flee the scene, Prinsloo speculated that he remained in Gauteng because he believed any potential evidence linking him to the crime had been destroyed.
The 21-year-old Varsity College student stands accused of murdering Kluyts, a 34-year-old teacher at Delta Park High School, on October 29. Kluyts had gone missing while participating in a MyRun event in Parkmore, and her body was later discovered on a path near the Sandton Sports Club.
Video footage captured Mahungela in the vicinity, wearing Kluyts’ T-shirt, leading to his arrest a month later.
Mahungela claimed that he found Kluyts’ body and turned her over to check for signs of life. Upon realising she was deceased, he removed her clothes to avoid leaving fingerprints. Although he did not provide a detailed explanation for wearing her T-shirt, he admitted to discarding her clothing.
He also stated that he left her cell phone next to her body, as he deemed it unnecessary to take it.
The case has been postponed to January 19, allowing for further investigation and legal proceedings.