The trial of five alleged gangsters accused of murdering actor and football player Dumisani Masilela while attempting to hijack his car in Johannesburg last year, starts this week.
The trial of Bongani Masombuka, 34, Sfundo Nkosi, 30, Khumbudzo Mukhuba, 27, Brian Makhubedu, 24, and Mashudu Malema, 31, all of Ivory Park near Midrand, was yesterday postponed to Thursday in the High Court in Pretoria for the accused to get legal aid representation.
The five face 11 charges, including killing Masilela and attempting to rob him of his car in Tembisa in August last year.
The 29-year-old Rhythm City actor managed to speed away and drive himself to hospital after being shot. He underwent emergency surgery, but died later on the same day as a result of a bullet wound to his abdomen.
The accused also face charges relating to a number of other car hijackings, kidnapping their alleged victims and robbing them of their cars, cellphones and cash.
The state says the group’s alleged crime spree started in Siyabuswa township in Mpumalanga in June last year, when they allegedly hijacked a Toyota Quantum, which they allegedly used two months later to hijack Trevor Shabangu’s black Jeep Wrangler.
Shabangu was allegedly forced to move to the back seat, searched and robbed of his belongings and two of the accused were allegedly in the Jeep later that night when they stopped next to Masilela’s Golf 7.
They allegedly attempted to rob Masilela at gunpoint and fired a shot at him when he managed to drive away.
After this incident, the accused allegedly drove to Kalfontein where they tried to remove the tracking system from Shabangu’s Jeep.
They also allegedly withdrew R1 000 from Shabangu’s bank account after forcing him to provide them with a PIN number.
He was left at an unknown location and his Jeep was later found abandoned in Ebony Park.
The state alleges that two of the accused and other perpetrators were hiding in Rustenburg in August last year when they allegedly robbed a couple of their Ford Ranger at gunpoint before robbing them of their cellphones and cash.
They left them in the veld with their hands and feet tied.
Masombuka was arrested while allegedly in possession of the Toyota Qauntum and one of his victims’ cellphones.