Sentencing in Verulam farm murder next year

DHIR ‘Roy’ Singh, left, and Kallawathie Beekarie.

DHIR ‘Roy’ Singh, left, and Kallawathie Beekarie.

Published Dec 4, 2023


Durban — Three men convicted of murdering a Verulam couple during a robbery at their farm will be sentenced next year.

An outstanding pre-sentencing report for the trio who were aged 20, 18 and 15 at the time of the couple’s murder has caused the sentencing to be delayed.

Judge Carol Sibiya convicted Thobelani Manqele, 25, Sphiwe Shezi, 23, and Ndawo Ndlovu, 21, in October.

The matter was adjourned for two pre-sentencing reports taking into consideration the ages of the accused when they had committed the offences.

The men had broken into the Cottonlands Farm home of Dhir “Roy” Singh, 68, and Kallawathie Beekarie, 65, in September 2018 and killed them.

Singh was stabbed several times with his fishing spear in the neck and chest, while Beekarie was forced into the bath tub, her hands tied behind her back, and made to kneel to be strangled with cables.

Their bodies were found in the locked bathroom.

Several items were stolen from the couple’s home, including a green Toyota Conquest, cellphones, a TV set, a hi-fi sound system, a pellet rifle, a DVD player, a beach umbrella, and a microwave.

Some of the items were found in the possession of some of the accused at the time of their arrests.

The trio recently appeared in the Durban High Court where senior State prosecutor advocate Khatija Essack indicated that interviews for the outstanding report had been done and needed to be compiled.

The case was adjourned provisionally to January 24.

Sibiya instructed the State and defence to have their heads of arguments in relation to aggravation and mitigation of sentence written and ready on the provisional date.

“We will want written heads of argument on January 24 to be handed on that day to the judge who will be dealing with the matter on that day. This adjournment should give all of you enough time,” she said.

The three accused had initially been arrested with two others, Emmanuel Nhlengethwa and Bonginkosi Freedom Mkhize, who became the State’s Section 204 witnesses in the trial.

Sunday Tribune