Famo artistes charged with murder

MASERU — Famo music artistes Sarele Sello and Boithatelo Leopa appeared before the Mafeteng Magistrate’s Court on Friday to answer charges of murder.
The two are accused of kidnapping and killing a popular music producer, Mohapi Sello, in May in the ongoing gang wars within the music industry.
Sello, who is known in music circles as Lehlanya and Leopa were released on bail after spending four days in remand prison.
Another suspect, Motlasi ‘Mentla’ Selai, 30, who is a famo musician, also appeared in court on Monday and was remanded in custody until his next court appearance.
The three were accused of kidnapping music producer Sello in Maseru and killing him.
The deceased’s body was later found in his abandoned car in Kolo, Mafeteng.
Police spokesperson Masupha Masupha said the three were arrested together with a local radio presenter during Army Day celebrations at Mejametalana on Saturday last week.
“The suspects were arrested while they were watching an army show at Mejametalana recently,” Masupha said.
The presenter was later released after police found no evidence linking him to the alleged crime.
Masupha refused to disclose the name of the presenter.
“The radio presenter was later released as there was no evidence linking him to the alleged crimes,” he added.
Police found three illegal 9mm firearms at the three suspects’ respective homes.
The murdered Sello was a music producer for a Mafeteng famo gang, Seakhi, which for long has been at war with Sarele Sello’s gang, Terene.
Sello was murdered a few days before another popular famo artist, Lephatšoe ‘Selomo’ Lebajoa, was shot dead by unknown gunmen outside a city hotel.
Although Selomo was a leader of a rival famo gang, Fito, he had begun to preach the gospel of peace and reconciliation between the warring Seakhi and Terene groups.
Fighting between the two groups has resulted in the death of more than 100 artistes in the past two years.
Most of them were from Mafeteng district.

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