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Charl Kinnear: what you need to know about top cop's assassination case

28 September 2020 - 14:10 By unathi nkanjeni
Lt-Col Charl Kinnear was murdered in a suspected hit in Cape Town on Friday, September 18.
Lt-Col Charl Kinnear was murdered in a suspected hit in Cape Town on Friday, September 18.
Image: SA Police Service

The assassination of top cop Lt-Col Charl Kinnear continues to make headlines as events leading up to his death take centre stage. One person has been arrested in connection with his murder so far.

Here is what you need to know:

Who was Kinnear?

The late top cop was attached to the Western Cape Anti-Gang Unit as a section commander involved in investigations into several high-profile cases, resulting in multiple arrests.

Kinnear, 52, was the investigating officer in an extortion case involving alleged underworld figure Nafiz Modack, the murder case of biker boss Tim Lotter and the murder case of Cape Town attorney Pete Mihalik.


According to police spokesperson Brig Vishnu Naidoo, Kinnear was assassinated in front of his Bishop Lavis, Cape Town, home on Friday, September 18.

Naidoo said the details were still very vague but a 72-hour activation plan was activated to ensure that evidence or information that could assist in the successful investigation of the case was not lost.

A reward of R1m is being offered by forensic investigator Paul O’Sullivan’s non-profit organisation, Forensics for Justice, for information that leads to the arrests and conviction of Kinnear's killer or killers.

Alleged gun syndicate

Sunday Times reported at the weekend that Kinnear was allegedly investigating a gun syndicate at the police Central Firearms Registry (CFR). According to the report, the investigation was a threat to the criminal underworld and a corrupt police network.

The report quoted experts monitoring firearms flooding the underground world. It also reported that the possibility of a link between Kinnear’s assassination and the CFR investigation quickly became the main line of inquiry for detectives trying to solve Kinnear's murder.


TimesLIVE reported that former rugby player Zane Kilian, was arrested in connection with the murder of Kinnear.

It is believed that Killian played a key role in the assassination plot. He faces charges of murder, conspiracy to commit murder and illegal interception of communication.

Kilian appeared in the Bishop Lavis magistrate's court on Friday and is being held at the Bellville police cells. The court postponed the matter to October 5 for further investigation and a bail hearing.

More arrests coming

Police minister Bheki Cele said police would make more arrests. Six police officials have been implicated in a 2019 49-page affidavit by Kinnear, which was obtained by Sunday Times last week.

“We said, and still say, we will have to get to the bottom of the issue in the Western Cape. For the fact that somebody has been arrested, but we expect to get more people, that is not the end of the matter,” Cele told eNCA.

DA weighs in

The DA's MP Andrew Whitfield called on the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (Ipid) to probe possible police involvement in Kinnear's murder.

“If these reports are to be believed, Kinnear would have possibly exposed large-scale corruption within the CFR ranks,” said Whitfield.

“The DA believes that Ipid has an important role to play in exposing the rot in the SAPS which may have led to Kinnear’s horrendous murder. Ipid cannot cross its arms and allow the people who potentially plotted this vile act to continue to work within the service.”