Three suspects were arrested by Mpumalanga police on Wednesday in connection with the alleged mob justice killing of a 33-year-old man who was beaten to death after being accused of theft.
The incident happened in Mahushu Trust, Masoyi, on Tuesday and was reported to the police on the same day.
When they arrived at the scene, the victim was already dead.
Police spokesperson Brigadier Leonard Hlathi said a case of murder was opened and a 28-year-old woman and two men, both aged 29 were arrested.
“A preliminary investigation has currently revealed that the victim was suspected by the trio to have stolen property from their house. They then allegedly assaulted him until he died,” he added.
Mpumalanga police commissioner Lieutenant-General Mondli Zuma condemned the incident and called on members of the public to report criminal activities as opposed to taking the law into their own hands.
“People who engage in mob justice should know that the law will definitely be after them.
“There is nobody who is above the law despite whatever grievances one might have. You cannot be a law unto yourself.”
Zuma also encouraged communities to join structures such as community police forums and work together with their local leaders to address crime.
“We hope the arrest of the suspects will send a clear message to those who might engage in acts of mob justice that regardless of who they are, they will be locked up. Acts of mob justice are acts of criminality that is all.”