The three men appeared in the KaBokweni Magistrate’s Court and are expected to return to court on June 24.

 Bontle Mashiyane.

Three suspects appeared in the KaBokweni Magistrate’s Court outside White River today for six-year-old Bontle Mashiyane’s brutal murder. They were charged with kidnapping, human trafficking, rape and murder.

The men were remanded in custody until June 24 and have applied for Legal Aid assistance.

They abandoned their bail application and their case was transferred to the Masoyi Periodical Court.

A provincial police spokesperson, Brig Selvy Mohlala, said Bontle’s body was found on Saturday May 21 at Mganduzweni near White River.

She was reported missing on April 30 by her family after she had last been seen playing with other children in a neighbour’s yard.

“The investigation team was led to a scene where her body was discovered in thick bush, not far from her homestead, about 2km from her residence. Her body was found in a state of decomposition and mutilated,” said Mohlala.

The magistrate’s court denied the mediapermission to record or take photos of the suspects during and after proceedings.

The prosecutor argued that allowing the media to take photos of the suspects will put their lives at risk. Their homes might be torched as the suspects have already received threats.

Bontle’s mother, Permission Seipane, gave birth to a premature baby due to stress on Thursday May 19.

  • Because the accused, who have previously been identified in the media, are facing a sex offence charge, their names have been withheld as prescribed by the Criminal Procedure Act. In terms of the act, they may only be identified in connection with the rape charge once they have pleaded.

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