South Africa: Kidnappers Sentenced to 10 Years

press release

Eastern Cape — Dube Mhlanga (22) and Sibongiseni Simon Mdingi (38) appeared at the Mthatha Regional Court on 21 April 2021 where they were both sentenced to 10 years direct imprisonment for kidnapping.

On 13 June 2019 at 11:00, Vuyolwethu Fadana (27), a businessman from Corhana Village in Libode was kidnapped while coming from his family business, the Madeira Mall in Libode. Fadana was on his driveway, removing the branch that had blocked the entrance when he was hit at the back of his head with a blunt object and lost consciousness.

When he regained consciousness, he discovered that he was held in his vehicle by three armed men who promised not to harm him if he complied with their instructions. A ransom of R1 million was demanded from his family and the police were alerted. An operation was conducted which led to the safe rescue of Fadana five days after the kidnapping as well as the arrest of Mhlanga and Mdingi.

During the operation, a shootout ensued and the third kidnapper, Michael Wopela (39) was fatally wounded. The duo were kept in custody throughout the trial and made several court appearances at the Mthatha Regional Court until they were convicted and sentenced.

The Hawks' Provincial Head in the Eastern Cape, Major General Mboiki Obed Ngwenya commended the UMthatha Serious Organised Crime Investigation team for ensuring that the criminals face the full might of law.

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