Keetmanshoop resident found guilty of murder and rape

09 Jun 2015 16:20pm
WINDHOEK, 09 JUN (NAMPA) - A Keetmanshoop resident accused of murdering farmworker Likius Ngesheya in February 2008 at a farm in the //Karas Region’s Bethanie district, was on Tuesday found guilty as charged in the High Court.
The 32-year-old Marius Thomas was found guilty on a charge of murder, robbery with aggravating circumstances, rape, kidnapping and indecent assault.
Thomas was, however, not found guilty on a second count of robbery with aggravating circumstances, but was instead found guilty on an alternative count of unlawful use of property (a motor vehicle) without the owner's permission.
He was found guilty in a judgment handed down by High Court Judge Nate Ndauendapo here on Tuesday, following the finalisation of his trial on 13 May this year.
Evidence presented before court during trial have it that Thomas murdered Ngesheya between 25 and 26 February 2008 at Farm Kaalvlakte by hitting him several times on the head with a pickaxe handle.
Shortly after the killing, Thomas stole a Ford Courier pick-up vehicle Ngesheya was driving at the time. The car belonged to the deceased person's employer and farm owner Jacobus Hendrik Oosthuizen.
He was arrested and locked up, but was released from police custody in 2009 when he was granted bail in the Keetmanshoop Magistrate's Court.
Following his release on bail, Thomas left Keetmanshoop and went to stay with his father at the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry's research centre at Farm Gellap Ost in the Keetmanshoop district where he raped a woman on 03 August 2009.
He tied up the victim with ropes and seriously threatened to stab her and another young woman if they screamed for help.
After having sexually violated the complainant, Thomas stole a Nissan 1400 pick-up and approximately N.dollars 2 700 in cash belonging to the rape victim.
He then kidnapped the second woman and forced her into the car, keeping her captive until she managed to escape at a service station in Keetmanshoop at a later stage.
Thomas also indecently assaulted her.
Windhoek-based defence lawyer Monty Karuaihe is defending Thomas, acting on the instructions of the Justice Ministry's Directorate of Legal Aid.
State Advocate Jack Eixab is appearing for the prosecution.
Thomas was on Tuesday remanded in police custody at the Windhoek Correctional Facility until 15 June this year, when he returns to court to hear the submissions of evidence for sentencing.