If more criminal cases are withdrawn after farm murders, further enquiries should be made into the actions of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA).
That’s the opinion of minority rights group AfriForum who as responding to the NPA withdrawing three murder charges against three men in the investigation of a farm murder in the North West Province.
AfriForum says it is concerned because the murder cases against three of the eight men suspected of killing the Coligny farmer Hannes Christie (65), who was murdered on the farm Vlakfontein near Coligny in North West in February 2018, were withdrawn.
Ian Cameron, AfriForum’s Head of Community Safety, says: “AfriForum is monitoring the matter and is of the opinion that if more cases are withdrawn, further enquiries should be made into the actions of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) at ground level in this type of cases.”
Cameron adds that suspects had also been released in the past, not because of their innocence but rather because of poor investigative work and in particular poor prosecuting by the NPA’s officials at ground level. “For example, in Gauteng, the murderers of Bernadette Hall’s murdered husband, David Hall, were released for similar reasons, and in many other cases nobody has been arrested.
“We are also assisting in the case of Nicci Simpson, who was attacked not far from Bernadette Hall’s farm, and an electric drill was used to drill holes in her hands and feet – up until today no arrests have been made,” Cameron says.
He also adds that in Simpson’s case identikits were compiled and statements were taken only about a month after the attack.
The murdered Hannes Christie is one of the more than 200 victims of the approximately 182 farm attacks so far this year.