Wanted man shot dead in Mafeteng

MASERU — Police on Sunday shot dead a Mafeteng man who was wanted in connection with the murder of two famo musicians earlier this year.

The 26-year-old suspect was killed during crossfire with the police after he resisted arrest, the police said this week.

The suspect, whose name was not released, was wanted in connection with the killing of famo artiste, Lephats’oa Lebajoa, popularly known as Selomo and another musician called Phakiso “Piololo” Shale.

The two musicians were killed in separate incidents earlier this year.

The police said they could not release the suspect’s name as they were still to inform his next of kin.

Police spokesman Masupha Masupha said they received a report that the man was shooting at some villagers at Ha Moeketsi after they attempted to confiscate livestock that was grazing in reserved pastures.

It was not clear if the livestock belonged to him or not.

Masupha said the man, who was also wanted for armed robbery, murder and other crimes, shot at the villagers using two 9mm firearms.

He said when the police arrived at the scene the deceased was still firing indiscriminately at the villagers.

“By the time the police arrived he had already shot dead one villager,” Masupha said.

He said the man defied the police’s order to stop firing. Instead he opened fire on the officers who were trying to disarm him.

“The man was killed during the ensuing crossfire with police,” Masupha said.

The police spokesman said the suspect had been recently implicated in an armed robbery at a shop owned by a Chinese national in Mafeteng.

The businessman lost an undisclosed amount of cash and some cellphones.

Investigations are continuing.

Meanwhile, a 28-year-old South African national, Ajub Ismail, was on Thursday sentenced to six years in prison or pay a fine of M8 000 after he was convicted of illegal possession of diamonds.

The man appeared before the Mokhotlong Magistrate’s Court to answer charges of illegal possession of two diamonds.

He paid the fine and was set free.

Masupha said the suspect was arrested on November 9 following a tip off from Tlokoeng Mopolaneng villagers.

“Police arrested him immediately because he did not have a licence to deal in diamonds,” Masupha said.

The suspect told the police that he bought the diamonds from a 26-year-old woman who stays in Tlokoeng Mopolaneng village.

After his arrest the suspect led the police to the woman’s home in Tlokoeng Mopolaneng village where they recovered M17 500 from her.

“We went to the village where the woman stays and she had M17 500 which she said she got after selling two diamonds,” Masupha said.

He said the woman told the police that she illegally mined the diamonds from a yard outside Lets’eng Diamond Mine in Mokhotlong.

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