Relatives don't believe 'paedophile ring' co-author committed suicide
Relatives of the co-author of a book that lifted the lid on an alleged apartheid-era paedophile ring say his life was in danger and do not believe that he committed suicide.
Former policeman Mark Minnie‚ 58‚ was found with a gunshot wound to the head on a smallholding in Port Elizabeth on Monday.
He had co-authored recently published book‚ The Lost Boys of Bird Island‚ which implicated high-ranking National Party cabinet ministers and a businessman in the abuse of young boys during the 1980s.
Family members said that Minnie had told them‚ before he died‚ that his life was in danger.
Relative Tersia Dodo told the SABC that Minnie was no coward and would not have taken his own life.
“I spoke to a couple of my cousins … and to all of them he expressed that his life was in danger and that if anything did happen to him‚ we must know‚ that it was done to him – not by himself‚” she said.
Minnie was following up leads and more evidence that had surfaced‚ after publication of the book‚ when he died in Port Elizabeth.
A gun found next to his body allegedly belonged to the owner of the smallholding‚ who was away and unaware of the shooting until the body was found‚ along with an apparent suicide note.
“I knew about the book for many years and I also knew about what he had been through … He had seen and been involved with the investigation surrounding the book – books I could actually say – because there is further information‚” said Dodo.
“Mark faced life head on. There is no way that I‚ or any of us believe‚ that he would have opted out and that is why I agreed to do this interview‚ to dispel any thoughts and rumours that this could have been a suicide‚” she said.
“He wasn’t the kind of man that was cowardly‚ that would do something like that. His love for his family and his friends and his colleagues that he worked with … it wouldn’t have been right for the man that Mark was.”
She believed the “supposed suicide note” may have been written under duress: “I would like to see it before I believe it was written by Mark.