Gangland Port Elizabeth: Convicted killer gets life sentence

JULY 3, 2015

A Port Elizabeth gangbanger, 23-year-old Almarco 'Hunter' Kiewiets, was on Friday sentenced to life in the Port Elizabeth High Court for the 2013 murder of 31-year-old, Joseph 'Bompie' Wright - who is believed to have been a leader of a rival gang, the Shotas.

Kiewiets, an alleged member of the Room Rats gang, was convicted on 20 February this year  and was awaiting sentencing. He also faced two charges of attempted murder and illegal possession of a firearm and ammunition. 

Wright was shot dead in a hail of bullets at his garage at his home in Helenvale, on September 25, 2013, while two of his friends, Robin Taylor and Ignatius Geyers, were wounded.

According to Taylor - reportedly also a member of the Shotas gang, Kiewiets did not kill him on the day of the attack because when he got to him, he had run out of bullets. He said that Kiewiets was with two other men on the day but he was the only one armed with a revolver.

Apparently, the Room Rats had tried to kill Wright on several occasions and even opened false attempted murder cases against him in the battle for turf.

Kiewiets pleaded not guilty and denied being part of a gang. 

At the time of his conviction, Port Elizabeth police hailed it as a success as gang-related cases are tough to prove in court as witnesses rarely come forward for fear of reprisals.

Police said Kiewiets was also sentenced to five years each on two counts of attempted murder.