Koës double murder suspects denied bail

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Matheus Hamutenya

Keetmanshoop-Three men accused of the murder of an elderly couple at their farm in the Koës district were denied bail in the Keetmanshoop Magistrate’s Court yesterday.

Julius Frederick Arndt, 40, Andries Afrikaner, 37, and Johannes Christiaan, 36, are accused of killing Giel and Sarie Botma at farm Lindeshof on Friday night, and they made their first court appearance at Keetmanshoop where they were denied bail.

The court was fully packed with many people standing outside due to lack of space as they wanted to get a glimpse of the accused, and the police had every corner covered, with the //Kharas regional commander Commissioner Rudolf Isaak and his deputies also present at court.

All three accused are charged with two counts of murder, possession of a firearm without a licence, possession of ammunition, theft of a motor vehicle, and housebreaking with the intent to rob and robbery, but Arndt faces an additional charge of housebreaking with intent to steal and theft.

The three were denied bail by Magistrate Frans Anderson, after the prosecutor Marlon Adams objected to bail, saying the court fears the three might abscond once given bail, and that the investigations are still at a sensitive stage and they might be interfered with.

The prosecution also asked that the three suspects be kept at the Keetmanshoop police holding cells and not at Koës.

Haulies Visagie, one of the community members who turned up at court to show solidarity and condemn the senseless killing of the couple, said the presence of the community is to demand justice, saying people from different backgrounds showed up which shows that the case has touched many.

“We are here to show support and solidarity and we are not talking of black and white, we are here as a diverse community and we are all here to see that justice prevails,” he said.

//Kharas regional governor Lucia Basson who made a stop at the court was also shocked and dismayed by the killing of the elderly people, saying she hopes that those who are responsible will be held accountable.
“This is sad, they killed helpless old people, so I hope those responsible do not get bail, they must rot in jail,” she said.

All three suspects indicated that they will make use of legal aid services, and the magistrate postponed the case to April 23 for further police investigations and legal aid application.

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