News / South Africa / Local News

Chrisune Vermeulen
2 minute read
24 May 2018
10:09 am

Bitcoin demands for kidnapped Katlego leave parents distraught

Chrisune Vermeulen

A search followed in and around the area where Katlego went missing after they left the station.

Katlego is one example of children who have made headline after going missing. He was reported missing earlier this month, but he was luckily returned safe and sound. PHOTO: Supplied.

Kidnappers demanded ransom for 13-year-old Katlego Marite after he was abducted in front of his parents’ house in Tasbet Park, in Witbank, Mpumalanga, in broad daylight.

According to Katlego’s best friend, there were three occupants in the vehicle used in the abduction of the 13-year-old. The man who grabbed Katlego was dressed in black, with a green jacket, Witbank News reports.

Unfortunately, the vehicle had no number plates.

READ MORE: Mpumalanga boy’s kidnappers demand more than R1m ransom in Bitcoin

Katlego’s parents, Mirriam and Lolo Lekgoane, left immediately after their child was abducted, and went to the Witbank Police Station with the two friends.

A search followed in and around the area where Katlego went missing after they left the station.

“We asked the South African Community Crime Watch [SACCW] for help, and they did not think twice to assist us and have been there ever since,” Marite added.

At about 6pm on Sunday, the family went back to their house to find a ransom note, demanding 15 Bitcoins. The ransom note started with: “This is a kidnapping. We have your child. Your child will not be harmed if the following demands are met …”

The ransom note stating where the Bitcoin should be deposited into

The police have urged the public to come out with any information that could lead to the discovery of the 13-year-old boy, and to the arrest of his kidnappers.

“To be honest, I am hurting. I just want my child back in one piece. Do not do anything wrong to my child,” Marite pleaded to the abductors over national television.

With Bitcoin being a new, relatively unknown cryptocurrency Katlego’s father, Lolo sadly concluded: “If only they could communicate with us in any way because I do not even know what Bitcoin is or how the process works for this demand they gave me.”

No arrests have been made yet, and police is still investigating this matter.

For any information that could help the police contact, Captain Africa Nyathi at 071 352 6007 or call the SAPS Crime Stop number 08600 10111.

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