Cop killers given two life terms each

Two Cape Flats men were on Thursday each given two life sentences for the murder of a man in an argument about a baseball cap and for the later murder of a police detective who investigated them for the first murder.

Ebraheem Jacobs (26) and Gareth Leetz (24) appeared before Judge Andre le Grange and two assessors at the Cape High Court, and were sentenced for the murders of Godfrey Hendricks and Woodstock detective, Inspector Lourens le Roux.

Le Grange said murder itself was the most serious of all offences, but it became even more serious when the victim was a police official on duty.

The judge said the murders showed that the two men had no respect for human life.

He added: ”The two of you are a danger to society as shown by the barbaric and callous attack on both victims.”

Hendricks was shot through the head at close range in a dispute about the ownership of a baseball cap, while Le Roux died in a hale of bullets as he sat in his car outside the police station in broad daylight.

The judge said both accused had come from stable family backgrounds, but had chosen to walk the road of crime.

He said the murder of the on-duty police official was a threat to the very fabric of society and undermined the basis of the country’s young democracy.

He agreed with prosecutor Esna Erasmus that the murder of a police official demanded a particularly heavy sentence.

The judge said Jacobs had for the second time protested his innocence in court on Thursday, despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary.

Leetz’s attorney Mike Jennings told the South African Press Association he was considering an application for leave to appeal and would decide on Tuesday next week. – Sapa

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