POTCHEFSTROOM –Thatayaone Gift Lethoba (32), Mandlenkosi Enock Msuthwana (36) and Solomzi Ashford Matwa (36) were sentenced yesterday in the Mmabatho Regional Court after being found guilty for hijacking.
The sentencing came after an incident that occurred in March 2016. It was reported then that the victim was driving home on Friday, 11 March 2016 at about 14:30 on the Lichtenburg/Mahikeng Road when he gave three hitchhikers a lift. When approaching Dihatshwane village, one of the persons he offered a lift requested him to stop as he needed a body break. The victim pulled over, but was pointed with a firearm and dragged to the back seat where he was made to lie down. The accused drove to Bodibe village, close to Itsoseng where they tied the victim to a tree with cable ties and wires and then robbed him of his money before driving away with his vehicle, a silver Volkswagen Polo.
The victim managed to free himself and walked to a nearby house where he was assisted.
Through a tracking company, the vehicle was recovered in Randfontein and all accused were arrested the same day at about 19:00. The trio has been in custody since their arrest in 2016.
They were sentenced as follows:
Thatayaone Gift Lethoba (32): 12 years imprisonment
Mandlenkosi Enock Msuthwana (36): 10 years imprisonment
Solomzi Ashford Matwa (36): 10 years imprisonment
The Provincial Commissioner of North West, Lieutenant General Sello Kwena, congratulated the detectives for securing the conviction which he said will send a strong message that crime does not pay.