The Pietermaritzburg High Court convicted and sentenced Siyabonga Prince Cele (33) to life imprisonment plus 26 years imprisonment for an inquest which was changed to murder, attempted murder, robbery and possession of unlicensed firearm and ammunition. He was convicted after the court heard how he committed these crimes at Pietermaritzburg area in 2017.
On 15 December 2017 at 23.30, the victim and his friend were in their VW Golf vehicle along Greyling Street when they were approached by five unknown suspects. They were pointed with firearms and the driver was forced to move from driver’s seat. The suspects drove the vehicle with their victims and later they were later dropped off at Dales Park. The victims were assaulted and searched. Their cellphones were taken before the suspects drove away in their vehicle. Police were alerted and spotted the vehicle along the N3 towards Durban.
Police tried to stop the vehicle but the vehicle sped off. A chase ensued and the suspects open fire at police. Police retaliated and one suspect was killed during the shootout. The second suspect was arrested with a gunshot wound. A revolver with three rounds of ammunition was found as well as cellphones taken during the hijacking. Cases of hijacking, inquest, attempted murder and possession of an unlicensed firearm and ammunition were opened for further investigation. The docket was transferred to Alexandra Road Vehicle Crime Investigation Unit. During the trial, the inquest charge was changed to murder.