Windhoek-Two men who were on trial in connection with the murder of a pensioner in Rehoboth in 2011 were yesterday found guilty by the Windhoek High Court.
The court found 36-year-old Riaan Khaxab and his co-accused Hans Gareth Kamberipa, 34, responsible for the robbery and death of 73-year-old Ernst Jacobus Cloete.
The duo allegedly went to farm Drie Riviere in the vicinity of Rehoboth with the intent to steal livestock. Upon their arrival at the farm they found Cloete attending to his livestock. The two then ambushed Cloete and struck him with an axe while he was tending to his sheep and goats that were grazing in the veld. According to the State, Khaxab and his accomplice tied Cloete’s feet and hands, while he was unconscious, with the rope they had stolen from him.
“The accused acted with a common purpose at all times when they struck the deceased repeatedly with an axe on his head – no doubt they intended to kill him,” explained Judge Dinah Usiku.
She ruled that the accused are both guilty of his murder.
Khachab and Kamberipa robbed the deceased of his rifle, suppressor, telescope and a rifle bag which contained eight bullets. In addition the duo took the deceased’s Samsung cellular phone, wallet which had contained N$300, and medical aid, Meatco membership and GIPF cards. The stolen goods were discovered in Kamberipa’s shared home.
The duo also stole 30 sheep and three goats which were later recovered at the showgrounds.
Cloete’s decomposed body was discovered two days after he was reported missing, covered with tree branches and grass, hidden under bushes.
According to the autopsy report Cloete’s cause of death could not be determined as there were no indications of internal nor external injuries.
“Although the cause of death could not be determined there is significant evidence that the deceased was hit and tied up without any chance of he helping himself,” said the judge.
Khaxab and Kamberipa were each found guilty on a count of murder, robbery with aggravating circumstances, defeating or obstructing or attempting to defeat or obstruct the course of justice, illegal possession of a firearm without a licence and one count of possession of ammunition without a licence.