Man shot execution style in front of family at braai

HECTORSPRUIT –  A man was shot execution style in front of his wife while they were having a braai in their lapa on Sunday night. However, justice was served when the two men responsible were killed hours later.

Although this happened in town, another family was attacked on a smallholding outside Malalane on Friday. It is not clear at this stage whether the two incidents could be linked.

Mr Leon Christo Clur (age unknown) and his wife, Ms Marli Clur (47) were having a braai with the family at about 20:00 in Blackwood Street in Hectorspruit. According to Komatipoort police spokesman, Capt Sarie van der Walt, two men armed with firearms which looked like pistols, entered the lapa.

The suspects ordered the family to be quiet. Mr Clur engaged in a fight with the suspects, but they managed to push him to the floor. “One of the suspects then shot him in the back of his head,” Van der Walt said.

He lost consciousness immediately. Ms Clur asked the suspects to stop shooting, telling them they could take anything they wanted.

The men demanded money on which Ms Clur told them it was in the house. She took them inside and they took two laptops, two iPhones, Mr Clur’s wallet, a hunting rifle, shotgun and ammunition after which they fled the scene.

He was rushed to Mediclinic Nelspruit with a Securicon ambulance, but died yesterday.

Meanwhile, the suspects were being tracked by members of the police’s Crime Intelligence Gathering Unit, accompanied WO Jacques Nel and farmers Mr Nico Nel, Mr Riaan Lombaard and Mr Frans Ment.

They were parked next to a railway line under the bridge at the Marloth Park crossing when two men approached. WO Nel identified himself to the suspects and ordered them to stop. One of them pointed a shotgun at Nel and the farmers.

Nel and two of the farmers shot at them and both were killed. Two firearms, including a .38 revolver and a shotgun were found on the suspects.

Detective commander Capt Louis Stander confirmed that they were investigating the possibility that the suspects might have been responsible for an attempted hijacking earlier at 19:40.

The victim, Mr Colly Magagula of Vosloorus, was in a truck on the N4, preparing for a journey to Steelpoort, when three men appeared at the driver’s side.

One of the suspects was armed with a pistol, the other with a knife. The third suspect was standing at the back and wasn’t visible to Magagula.

He said the one with the firearm opened the driver’s side and tried to climb into the truck.

He demanded money, but Magagula pushed him down with the door and jumped out on the passenger’s side and ran to the Engen filling station for assistance. He injured his left knee in the process.

Meanwhile, Mr Pieter Slabbert (51) is in a stable condition in Mediclinic Nelspruit’s high care unit where he is being treated for multiple gunshot and stab wounds.

He and his family were attacked on a smallholding near Malalane on Friday afternoon.

Lowvelder spoke to his wife, Ms Lizette Slabbert. According to her, she and her husband and their 22-year-old daughter were in the kitchen with the back door open at around 16:45, when two men entered the house. Slabbert said the one attacker had a 9mm pistol and the other was armed with knives.

She said the men didn’t seem bothered about hiding their identities from the family as they weren’t camouflaged.

They immediately started shooting at the husband while the wife and daughter ran to the other rooms. She said when the attackers got hold of her, “they kept hitting me in the face and holding the gun against my head”.

Lizette stated that the men called them “white trash” and threatened to kill and eliminate them. She said they took all their phones and the laptop that was on the kitchen table.

“The one attacker shot at my husband four times but only two bullets struck him. After they had shot him, they stabbed him as well.”

Slabbert said she pleaded for her daughter as they were grabbing her by the hair, threatening to kill her too. She said they finally let go of them and suddenly left. Her daughter then hid in her room in a cupboard. “She had concealed her phone and called for help.”

Although still traumatised, she wanted to make sure that all the people that had helped them were thanked. “I want to say thank you to the police, Securicon Lowveld and the whole farming community who had so kindly helped us. “I also want to thank Lowveld Hospital which arranged with Mediclinic to admit my husband immediately as well as the ambulance staff,” said Lizette.

Mediclinic Nelspruit spokesman, Ms Lisa Pillay, confirmed that the vicitm was in a stable condition. Mpumalanga police spokesman, Sgt Gerald Sedibe, said a case of house robbery and attempted murder had been opened.

“The police did a sweep of the area and the nearby sugar-cane fields and found three laptops and clothes. We are still investigating who they belong to as not all of the items came from the Slabberts’ home.”

Sedibe said no suspects had yet been arrested and anyone with information should contact the investigating officer, Lt Pat Banda on 082-449-0291.

Tereasa Ferrari and Nicolene Smalman

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