Suspect in custody for soldier murder

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Tefo Tefo

A MOHALE’S Hoek resident, Motlatsi Rantoane on Tuesday appeared before the Magistrate’s Court to face charges of murdering a soldier and a street vendor in an incident that occurred at the Maseru border post on Saturday.

Rantoane, 22, is also facing an attempted murder charge for shooting another soldier during the same incident.

Police spokesperson Superintendent Clifford Molefe yesterday told the Lesotho Times that “a 22 year-old man from Mohale’s Hoek appeared before the Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday in relation to the incident”.

“He was remanded in custody and is expected to appear again before court on the 30th of this month on remand.”

Rantoane’s charges revolve around the shooting of two soldiers and a street vendor at the border post last Saturday.

Lesotho Defence Force (LDF) Head of Public Affairs, Brigadier Ntlele Ntoi yesterday confirmed the incident to the Lesotho Times.

According to Brigadier Ntoi, two soldiers were on duty at Maseru border post on Saturday when a conflict ensued between them and one man that resulted into a shooting of the two army officers and a street vendor.

Brigadier Ntoi said the vendor died on the spot.

He said the two soldiers were rushed to hospital where one was reported dead on arrival, while the other was admitted for medical treatment.

“The army command that included Lieutenant General Motšomotšo on Monday visited the soldier who was admitted at Tšepong (Queen ‘Mamohato Memorial Hospital) and he seems to be recuperating,” he said.

He said it appeared there were more people involved in the alleged shooting and they had since fled to South Africa.

Brig Ntoi said the deceased and injured soldiers held the rank of private in the army.

He said the names of the deceased soldier and the one who was still in hospital would be announced after their families had been officially informed about the incident.

However, Superintendent Molefe refused to confirm whether or not there were other suspects who fled to South Africa, saying that would jeopardise the ongoing police investigations into the matter.

 

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