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Two more arrests in connection with Hillary Gardee's murder

08 May 2022 - 12:47
A group of women clad in black clothing, some in red and others in black doeks, gathered at the Gardee home in Mbombela as they carried candles in honour of slain Hillary Gardee.
A group of women clad in black clothing, some in red and others in black doeks, gathered at the Gardee home in Mbombela as they carried candles in honour of slain Hillary Gardee.
Image: Ziphozonke Lushaba

Two more men were arrested in Mbombela overnight in connection with the murder of Hillary Gardee.

Mpumalanga police commissioner Lt-Gen Semakaleng Manamela expressed her appreciation for the energy and commitment shown by the team probing the case. So far three suspects have been arrested. 

“This is encouraging and as we indicated that there were other people of interest that we were following and interviewing. Through our investigation, which is still proceeding, we were able to come out with information that we fully believe the two are the right suspects” she said.

The two join the 39-year-old suspect arrested on Friday in Schoemansdal (Nkomazi).

“As earlier indicated, more suspects may be arrested as the intensive investigation proceeds into the murder of 28-year-old Hillary Gardee who was laid to rest on Saturday,” Manamela said in a statement on Sunday.

On Saturday, police said they were questioning more suspects in connection with the murder after the dramatic arrest on Friday night.

In addition to the arrest, among those taken in for questioning was a staff member in the office of the ANC chief whip at the Mpumalanga legislature. The man is also believed to be the owner of a guest house that was raided by police. He has not been arrested.

After raiding the guest house and confiscating a 22-seater minibus, police arrested the 39-year-old suspect in Schoemansdal.

Friday night's arrest followed police minister Bheki Cele's activation of a 72-hour action plan to find Hillary's killer. Speaking at the funeral, Cele hinted at “political and economic” motives behind the killing.

Hillary, a 28-year-old IT graduate, was found murdered on Tuesday, four days after she disappeared after a shopping trip with her informally adopted daughter.

Her body was found in a field outside Mbombela. She had been assaulted and shot in the back of the head. Residents found her four-year-old daughter wandering the streets that night. The child is now with her biological mother.

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