Police say 22-year-old Samkelo Cele was allegedly assaulted and burnt to death after he stole dagga worth R3000.
Police from Tongaat, KwaZulu-Natal, have arrested three suspects in the Mahlabathini area, in connection with kidnapping and murder.
Police spokesperson in the province, Captain Nqobile Gwala, said the suspects were arrested in connection with the kidnapping and murder of 22-year-old Samkelo Cele on 27 December 2020, who was allegedly assaulted for stealing dagga worth R3000.
“He was forced into a taxi by the suspects who drove with him from Tongaat to Verulam. Police were informed and a case was opened for investigation,” Gwala said.
Following the arrest on Wednesday, the suspects – aged between 20 and 29 – took the police to the crime scene at Cottonlands in Verulam, where they pointed out Cele’s remains which were burnt beyond recognition, Gwala said.
Gwala added: “It is alleged that Cele was assaulted and burned to death.”
The three suspects are expected to appear in the Verulam Magistrate’s Court on Friday on charges of kidnapping and murder.
KwaZulu-Natal police commissioner, Lieutenant-General Khombinkosi Jula, commended the Tongaat police for arresting the suspects.
“No one has the right to take the law into their own hands. Police are there to assist and arrest criminals. We assure those who continue to commit criminal activities that they will receive a deserving sentence after they are arrested,” he said.