Two individuals, a 49-year-old school principal and a 42-year-old man, have been arrested by the Limpopo police in connection with the murder of Dr Malekutu Johannes Mehlape, a circuit manager for the Limpopo education department.
Dr Mehlape was tragically gunned down at his home in Mankweng Zone 1 on December 28 during a suspected robbery.
According to Colonel Malesela Ledwaba, the spokesperson for the Limpopo police, the principal was arrested at Moremadi Park after a warrant of arrest was issued.
The second suspect, a 42-year-old man, was found in possession of ammunition and a 9mm firearm with a grinded-off serial number. Preliminary investigations have revealed that this firearm was used in the murder of Dr Mehlape.
In addition to the two arrested individuals, three accomplices are also set to appear before the Mankweng Magistrate’s Court. These individuals include Dr Mehlape’s 28-year-old daughter, Mologadi Mehlape, as well as Hlolofelo Mogotlane, 33, and Tshepo Ranoto, 34. All five are facing charges of murder, possession of an unlicensed firearm, and possession of ammunition.
The arrest of the initial three suspects led to the confiscation of a double-cab Ford Ranger, which was allegedly used in the commission of the crime.
According to reports, Dr Mehlape’s daughter was ambushed upon returning home from a function, and the suspects demanded to know her father’s whereabouts. After robbing two individuals in the house, the armed suspects found Dr Mehlape, demanded cash, and shot him before fleeing the scene.
The Limpopo police have commended the arresting team for their relentless efforts in apprehending the suspects linked to this heinous crime. As the case progresses, the accused individuals are expected to submit formal bail applications to the court.