Coligny 'sunflower' killers sentenced to 18 and 23 years in jail
Convicted Coligny murderers Phillip Schutte and Pieter Doorewaard were sentenced to 23 and 18 years in jail respectively by the North West High Court on Wednesday.
Judge Ronald Hendricks said the actions of the two men who killed teenager Matlhomola Mosweu were a "disgrace" and "appalling".
Mosweu was killed after being accused of stealing sunflowers, although it was unclear how many of them there were or what their value was.
The judge said on the version of the sole witness in the case, Bonakele Pakisi, a gunshot was heard at the sunflower field. Schutte emerged in a bakkie, while Doorewaard was on a quad bike.
"You picked up the deceased from the van and threw him on the ground. It was not necessary. If you wanted action to be taken against him, you could have used other methods for him to be apprehended," said Hendricks.
Hendricks said as if that was not enough, the pair noticed Pakisi and forced him to get into the bakkie.
"You kidnapped him, assaulted him and forced him to drink alcohol, and you also pointed at him with a firearm, and his cellphone was also taken away from him," he said.
He said the incident had divided the small town of Coligny. "The community of Coligny was terrorised by this incident."
Hendricks said the offence was not planned or premeditated. "It happened on the spur of the moment. There was no direct intention to kill the deceased."
The pair was found guilty in October 2018 of killing Mosweu, of Scotland informal settlement, on April 20 the previous year, after accusing him of stealing sunflower heads.
Mosweu's mother Agnes Mosweu rejoiced after the sentencing.
"I am happy. I will finally be able to sleep at night knowing that the killers of my son are locked behind bars," she said.