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Jub Jub and Tshabalala found guilty of murder

Nickolaus Bauer

Molemo "Jub Jub" Maarohanye and his co-accused Themba Tshabalala have been found guilty on four counts of murder and two of attempted murder.

Molemo

 

"The accused in the case are found guilty on four counts of murder and two counts of attempted murder," magistrate Brian Nemavhidi told the packed courtroom at the Protea Magistrate's Court in Soweto on Tuesday.

Maarohanye and Tshabalala were drag-racing when one of their Mini Coopers ploughed into a group of schoolchildren on Mdlalose Drive in Protea North on March 8 2010 after taking a cocktail of drugs and alcohol, the court found.

Prince Mohube, Mlungisi Cwayi, Andile Mthombeni and Phomello Masemola were killed in the accident while Frank Mlambo and Fumani Mushwana were seriously injured.

Nemavhidi said the accident would not have occurred had both Maarohanye and Tshabalala not taken the decision to drive under the influence of intoxicating substances. 

"The death of the deceased was caused by the accuseds' reckless driving at high speeds while under the influence of drugs and alcohol," he said.

The duo was also found guilty of driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs at the time the crash occurred and of racing on a public road.

Drug tests performed on Maarohanye and Tshabalala after the incident tested positive for morphine and cocaine.

"Insinuation of tampering with drug tests can't stand. The results did not change," the magistrate said.

"The urine samples were not tampered with and the cellphone video was not compromised."

Maarohanye's version of events on the day of the crash was earlier rejected.

"This version is not accurate as it contradicts the accepted versions," said Nemavhidi.

"He [Maarohanye] could not explain why his fans, who were excited to see him and even recorded him, would falsely implicate him in the accident."

Nemavhidi also rejected Tshabalala's evidence, saying it contradicted that of state witnesses.

"It is not true that you overtook accused one [Maarohanye] when it was safe to do so," he said.

Nemavhidi said two witnesses testifying for Maarohanye collaborated their evidence to suit his version but they failed to convince the court.

The court accepted the testimonies of the witnesses.

Emotions ran high in the courtroom as the magistrate read out the judgment.

The families of those who were killed wept, prompting a brief adjournment after Nemavhidi pronounced his judgment.

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