State wants to oppose bail after trucks fire

Henry

The state intends to oppose bail in the case against five suspects who are accused of having a part in the recent wave of attacks on trucks in Mpumalanga, KwaZulu-Natal and Limpopo.

Nelson Khulekani Shongwe (29), Sibusiso Emmanuel Mthethwa (38), Fundile Alberta Mpondo (41), Mafika William Sibanda (61) and Nkosingiphile Nkosikhona Gumede (27) appeared for the second time in the magistrate’s court at Ermelo on Thursday.

The men – all members of the African Truck Drivers Forum – are facing charges of aggravated robbery, intentional damage to property, conspiracy to commit crime and possession of an unlicensed firearm.

Monica Nyuswa, spokesperson for the National Prosecuting Authority, says the state was ready on Thursday for the suspects to bring their bail applications. However, the defense requested that the case be postponed.

The case was consequently adjourned until August 10. The suspects remain in custody until then.

“The state will oppose bail due to the seriousness of the offenses with which the accused are charged,” says Nyuswa.

RNews earlier reported that no less than 21 trucks were set on fire within a few days earlier this month in Mpumalanga, KwaZulu-Natal and Limpopo.

The State alleges that the defendants conspired to damage trucks used for the transportation of goods because of certain grievances in the transportation industry.