DURBAN On 28 January 2020, the Ntuzuma Regional Court convicted and sentenced Qaphelani Shandu (35) and Lucky Ncube (28) to a lengthy jail term of 25 years for carjacking; attempted murder and armed robbery with aggravating circumstances as well as possession of unlicensed firearms and ammunition.

On 29 December 2017 at 22:40, a 29-year-old man and his friends were in his stationery vehicle at Siyanda when they were approached by the suspects. At gunpoint the suspects ordered them out of the vehicle. They were robbed of their car keys and cell phones. The suspects fled in the stolen motor vehicle. Police were immediately alerted to be on the lookout for the hijacked vehicle. Shortly afterwards, police officers from Ntuzuma SAPS spotted the vehicle and attempted to intercept it. The three men opened fire on police and a chase ensued.

When police eventually pulled the vehicle over, they found that Siphamandla Mpanza (21) and Shandu had sustained gunshot wounds during the shootout. Two unlicensed firearms were found in their possession and they were taken to hospital under police guard. The third suspect Ncube managed to evade arrest during the shootout however the investigating officer acting on a hunch that the suspect will require medical attention, managed to trace and arrest him. A case of carjacking; attempted murder and possession of unlicensed fireams and ammunition was opened in KwaMashu and Ntuzuma SAPS respectively for investigation.

The suspects made several court appearances at the Ntuzuma Magistrates Court while in custody as their bail was opposed by the investigating officer. Siphamandla Mpanza was granted bail by the court and he absconded. Mpanza is still at large after being granted bail.

The KwaZulu-Natal Provincial Commissioner, Lieutenant General Khombinkosi Jula commended the investigating officers for their dedication in ensuring that the accused receives a fitting sentence.

Source: South African Police Service