Woman implicated in Orange Farm child killings will apply for bail
Suspect had been released from custody days before double murder
The 29-year-old woman implicated in the killings of three young children in Orange Farm, south of Johannesburg, has been identified as Pontso Mahlanka.
The murders sent shockwaves through the community.
Mahlanka made a brief court appearance at the Vereeniging magistrate's court on Thursday, where she indicated she would apply for bail.
National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson Lumka Mahajana said Mahlanka appeared on charges of kidnapping and murder.
The bodies of Mpho Makondo, 8, and Simphiwe Mncina, 6, were found on September 19 after being reported missing the night before.
Makondo's naked body was found next to a large rock. Her arm was broken.
Mncina was found half-naked and dumped in the yard of a community member's house.
Suspect had recently been released from custody
Police spokesperson Brig Mathapelo Peters earlier confirmed the arrest of a 29-year-old woman in connection with the murders. Peters said the suspect allegedly killed the children just days after being released from custody in another child murder case.
“Police can confirm this is the same suspect who was arrested in April 2020 for the murder of another child, a boy who was her neighbour, after the child's body was found in her house. The boy had been reported missing earlier in the day. The search led to the woman's house, where the child's body was found,” said Peters.
“The woman and her partner were both arrested but charges were withdrawn against the male suspect. The murder case of April 2020 has been temporarily withdrawn in court pending the outcome of the toxicology report.
“The 29-year-old woman was released from custody on September 16 2020, three days before the murder of the two children.”
Peters revealed that the suspect had previously been charged for being in the country illegally.
Mahlanka was remanded in custody and the matter was postponed to October 5 to arrange a bail application. The NPA confirmed it would oppose the bid for bail.