Preller Square shooting assassin suspect eventually pinned down

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Members of the Free State Forensic Pathology Services arrive on the scene of the Preller Square shooting, while a policeman and a security officer keep a close watch. PHOTO: PIERCE VAN HEERDEN

The man believed to have pulled the trigger and killed businessman Louis Siemens has finally been pinned down.

This, after he is believed to have escaped to Lesotho several times. Bloemfontein police have confirmed to OFM News yet another arrest has been made in connection with the cold-blooded murder that happened in broad daylight in the basement parking of Preller Square.

A 39-year-old man, who is believed to be one of the two assassins in the Siemens murder in May this year, is expected to appear in the Bloemfontein Magistrate’s Court this morning. He was arrested last night in Phahameng in Bloemfontein. Police spokesperson, Thandi Mbambo, says a task team has managed to trace the suspect.

Mbambo says another suspect is still at large. OFM News previously reported that the men who assassinated Bloemfontein businessman, Louis Siemens, in May 2018 are still on the run. This is despite three men being in police custody for engineering the crime. This was revealed by prosecutor Advocate Johan de Nysschen during the last appearance of Stanley Bakili and the newly arrested co-accused policemen in the Bloemfontein Magistrate’s Court yesterday. According to De Nysschen, Molebatsi Mogoera, a detective from the Bayswater unit, and Kagiso Chabane, who is a court orderly at the Magistrate’s Court, have been accused of orchestrating the murder with Bakili. The policemen were not the assassins.

De Nysschen said it was because of this that the witness list was not added to the provisional indictment, out of fear that the witnesses will be influenced. The prosecutor told the Magistrate authorities know who the assassins are, they did, however, not know what their current location was.

Mogoera and Chabane’s legal counsel have been given copies of the provisional indictment, without the witness list. The two law enforcement officials were arrested for their alleged involvement in the crime last week. The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson in the Free State, Phaladi Shuping, told OFM News Mogoera and Chabane face charges that include murder and extortion.

It was initially suspected that the police officials were accessories after the fact, but the prosecution is now of the view that they were Stanley’s accomplices in engineering the crime. The prosecution says there is ample evidence of this, which includes phone records, bank transactions, and information of a vehicle tracker.

Formal Bail application had previously been postponed to 26 September after De Nysschen and the legal representation for the accused were at loggerheads over a suitable date for proceedings. The postponement is meant to afford Bakili an opportunity to find legal counsel, as he was without legal representation during the court appearance.

Olebogeng Motse & Josca Human / OFM News