Two men, who conspired with a young Pretoria woman to murder her parents on the Day of Goodwill in 2015, were yesterday sentenced in the High Court in Pretoria to life imprisonment.
Sentencing Tapelo Molokomme and his friend, Kgangelo Rapelogo, both aged 25, for the murders of Eva, 49, and Piet Beetge, 59, Judge Bert Bam said neither of the men had shown true remorse, although they might regret what they had done.
Molokomme’s girlfriend, Bonolo Gwendolene Lekalakala, 21, was in August sentenced to 20 years effective imprisonment after admitting that she had arranged the murders.
Lekalakala was a key witness in the two men’s trial. Judge Bam sentenced Molokomme and Rapelogo to two life terms for the murders and a further 15 years imprisonment for robbing the Beetges.
Lekalakala admitted to conspiring with the two men to murder her parents. She claimed Molokomme had suggested murdering her mother and she agreed, after an argument with her mother on Christmas Day.
She convinced her mother to let her stay at their home that night and then tried to poison her parents by putting ant poison into their drinks before letting the executioners into the house.
She stood by when the men strangled her mother and stepfather and attacked her stepfather with a brick.
The bodies were later dumped in a river “like trash”. The two men denied guilt.
Judge Bam said Molokomme and Rapelogo had murdered two people who were probably incapacitated after having consumed poison administered by their daughter.
It appeared from the evidence they had shown their victims no mercy and no respect as they dumped their bodies into a river.
He found that although the two accused were first offenders, had families to support, were relatively young and both suffered from medical conditions, their personal circumstances could not justify any deviation from the prescribed minimum sentences. – firstname.lastname@example.org