Saturday, 4 April 2009

Body deplores farmers' murders

01/04/2009 18:05 - (SA)

Bloemfontein - The "brutal murders" of two Free State farmers at Vierfontein were deplored by the commercial farmers body Free State Agriculture on Wednesday.

Free State Agriculture president Louw Steytler strongly condemned the cowardly and gross manner of the murders.

"I urge farmers to get involved in Free State Agriculture's rural safety plan," he said in a statement.

This follows the arrest of a 25-year-old man on Tuesday morning on the farm of Jan van Wyk, 82, at Vierfontein.

It was reported that the man was found sweeping the veranda and making food on Tuesday morning, when he was discovered by members of Free State Agriculture's rural safety organisation.

Van Wyk's mutilated body was found in the dining room of the house.

It was later found that the same man might have been involved in a fatal assault of another Vierfontein farmer, Basie Venter, 65, on the night before.

Venter's wife, Mary, 68, apparently witnessed the attack around 21:15 on Monday through a window in the house. Venter was attacked with an iron rod.

Steytler conveyed the organisation's sympathy to the victim's families.

"We regret these brutal attacks and murders on the farmers."

Steytler said the murders, which seemed muti-related, was barbaric and had no place in a modern world.

Kroonstad police spokesperson Maselela Langa confirmed the incidents.

He said the 25-year-old man, a Lesotho citizen, appeared in the Viljoenskroon Magistrate's Court on Wednesday.

The matter was postponed to April 7.



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