A case of armed robbery, unlawful possession of firearms and ammunition against Sizwe Makhathini, 21, Calvin Ditshego, 28, Andrea Machika, 33, and Bheka Madondo, 24, will resume in the KwaMhlanga Magistrate’s Court today for a bail application.
On Tuesday, chief magistrate Dawie Erasmus was compelled to postpone the matter following an argument between the suspects’ attorneys and the state, which took place for almost four hours and delayed other cases.
It was also heard that the suspects had pending charges in various areas, including in KwaZulu-Natal.
“We need to adjourn the matter to allow the state and the defence team to gather sufficient information to be presented before the court in the next trial for bail application. I therefore remand the suspects in custody,” Erasmus said.
They were arrested late last year after they were allegedly found in possession of an AK47 and five 9mm pistols.
They were further accused of robbing a security vehicle an undisclosed amount of cash and the guards’ mobile phones during a robbery at Key Stone Wholesaler.
The incident happened when security guards had just collected money from the wholesaler.
The court said the police preliminary investigation stated that the firearms were also used during the robbery.
However, police filed lifted fingerprints on the firearms, which was one of the issues that caused the strong argument in the courtroom.
The court revealed that the suspects were noticed by an off-duty policeman during the incident, who then called for backup.
They were later arrested in the bushes along the R568 road between the border of Gauteng and Mpumalanga while driving in a Golf 5 and an Avanza minibus taxi towards Bronkhorstspruit outside Pretoria.