Murder case over body on bakkie adjourned


Louis Coetzee (47), Jaco Kemp (45) and Gert van der Westhuizen (39) appeared together for the first time in the British Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday in connection with the murder of Dumisani Phakathi.

RNews reported earlier that Phakathi had apparently gone to collect water on a farm when he was allegedly assaulted.

Police officers were busy with routine patrols on the R511 just outside Brits on Sunday 17 September at around 02:00 when a Nissan NP 200 pick-up truck on the road aroused suspicion. Officers stopped the bakkie and searched after which they came across the lifeless body of 45-year-old Phakathi.

His body was apparently hidden under plastic bags on the boot of the bakkie.

According to Lt. Col. Amanda Funani, police spokesperson, said two suspects (Coetzee and Kemp) tried to flee at that stage, but they were arrested moments later.

The two made their first court appearance last Tuesday. Van der Westhuizen surrendered to the police later the same day. He appeared in court on Wednesday and was released on bail of R5 000.

The three defendants briefly appeared in court together on Tuesday. Coetzee and Kemp initially told the magistrates’ court that they would present their side of the case without any legal assistance. However, the case was postponed until 12 October after they decided to seek legal aid.

Meanwhile, Coetzee and Kemp remain behind bars.