The man accused of allegedly killing Karabo Mokoena appeared briefly in the Johannesburg Magistrate’s Court on Friday where his case was postponed, pending the expediting of forensic lab results which will help clarify whether Mokoena was dead or alive at the time he set her alight.
The State argued that this was a High Court case, adding that the investigation was not yet complete as they were still waiting for forensic results from the crime scene to be concluded.
There are two crime scenes – the apartment in Sandton where 27-year-old Sandile Mantsoe claims to have found Karabo Mokoena lying dead as result of suicide, and the veld in Lyndhurst where Mantsoe admitted in his affidavit that he had disposed of the body and burnt it beyond recognition using swimming pool acid, petroleum and a tyre.
The National Prosecuting Authority’s Phindi Louw said that the State could have been referring to either one of the different crime scenes, she would only be able to confirm which it was at a later stage.
Things such as testing the contents of the house, as well as what remains on Mokoena’s body, would be information that could be used to determine if Mokoena was alive or dead at the time of being burnt, she said.
The case was postponed to August 30.
Delay in case
Magistrate Piet du Plessis asked the State if they were sure that they would be ready with the results in a month, which the State said it would.
This despite the fact that the National Health Laboratory Services (NHLS) employees are currently on strike.
The court lamented the fact that the case was delayed by over two months with Magistrate Du Plessis, arguing that Mantsoe was arrested in May.
“People are in custody while there are delays because people are not doing their jobs,” he said sternly.
Mantsoe, who was sporting a black Adidas bomber jacket with a red zip, nodded as du Plessis went on. His hair was shaved bald.
Du Plessis threatened to throw the case off the court roll if there was any negligence or delay in obtaining the forensic report.
“You must go now and say you’ve got a month to expedite. Don’t wait until the 28th of August to go ask,” he frowned.
Mantsoe was appearing in connection with the alleged murder of his 22-year-old ex-lover, Karabo Mokoena. The case has been moved from court 13 to court 34.