Woman sentenced to 20 years for boyfriend’s murder

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Woman sentenced to 20 years for boyfriend’s murder

In a somber verdict, the Mbombela High Court has sentenced Zanele Mkhonto (29) to 20
years of direct imprisonment for the murder of police officer Sgt Mandlenkosi Happy Thwala
(45). The tragic incident occurred on the night of Tuesday, 2 August 2022, in Gedlembane,
Pienaar, prompting a thorough investigation by the Hawks Nelspruit-based Serious
Organised Crime Investigation.

During the investigation, Mkhonto, who was Sgt Thwala’s girlfriend, was implicated in the
murder. Following her arrest on Wednesday, 10 August 2022, she faced charges and
appeared at the Kanyamazane Magistrates’ Court, where she was remanded in custody.
Despite efforts to secure bail, Mkhonto remained detained since then, availing herself of
Legal Aid for her legal representation.

The legal proceedings unfolded over several appearances, with the case being postponed to
various dates. Finally, on Thursday, 2 November 2023, Mkhonto pleaded guilty, and the
matter was adjourned to Monday, 27 November 2023, for a pre-sentence report at the High
Court.

On 4 April 2024, the Mbombela High Court delivered its verdict, sentencing Mkhonto to 20
years of direct imprisonment.

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