Fourth suspect arrested for Hillary Gardee’s murder abandons bail bid
It emerged in court on Thursday, the accused has pending cases in two different courts in Mpumalanga.
Hlabirwa Rasie Nkune appearing in the Nelspruit Magistrates’ Court on Thursday. Picture: Supplied.
The fourth suspect arrested in connection with the murder of Hillary Gardee has abandoned his bail application.
Hillary Gardee murder case
Hlabirwa Rasie Nkune on Thursday appeared in the Nelspruit Magistrates’ Court facing several charges, including murder, rape, kidnapping and defeating the ends of justice.
The 36-year-old was arrested earlier this month, at his hide-out in Springs, east of Gauteng. His arrest brings to four the total number of suspects who have been arrested in connection with the murder case.
The other accused are Philemon Lukhele, Albert Gama and Sipho Mkhatshwa.
The four men have all been charged with conspiracy to commit murder, murder, rape, kidnapping, possession of an unlicensed firearm, possession of ammunition and defeating the ends of justice.
Gardee, the daughter of former EFF secretary-general Godrich Gardee, was found on 3 May near a timber plantation outside Mbombela, after she went missing at the Nelspruit Plaza on 29 April.
The 28-year-old was found with stab wounds, boot prints and a gunshot wound.
During Nkune’s appearance in court on Thursday, it emerged that he had pending cases in two different courts in Mpumalanga.
NPA regional spokesperson Monica Nyuswa said the accused also had a previous conviction for possession of an unlicensed firearm.
“He is also facing a charge of murder of a woman (Nonkululeko Crystal Nkosi) in the Delmas Magistrates’ Court and another case at KaNyamazane Magistrates’ Court, where he is facing two counts of murder.
“He allegedly killed a police officer and her sister which occurred in May this year. He also has a previous conviction where he was sentenced to four years of correctional supervision for possession of an unlicensed firearm,” Nyuswa said in a statement.
The resumption of the bail hearing for two of the suspects arrested for Gardee’s murder was expected to continue on 2 September 2022.
The case against the four accused was postponed to 9 September 2022.
All suspects were remanded in custody.
Compiled by Thapelo Lekabe