Former Blue Bulls player can't appeal murder conviction

Former Blue Bulls player can't appeal murder conviction

Former Blue Bulls player, Joseph Ntshongwana's application for leave to appeal the judgment against him was dismissed in the High Court in Durban today.


Ntshongwana was sentenced on December 19, 2014 to five life terms for hacking four people to death with an axe in 2011. He appealed all five counts.

It was reported earlier that Ntshongwana was convicted in September 2014 on four counts of murder, two of attempted murder, one of assault with intent to commit grievous bodily harm, one of kidnapping, and one of rape.

He killed Thembelenkosini Cebekhulu in Montclair, Durban, on March 20, 2011, Paulos Hlongwa in Lamontville two days later, Simon Ngidi in Umbilo the following day, and an unidentified man sometime that week in Yellowwood Park.

All were hacked to death with an axe. Two of the victims were beheaded.

He was charged with attempted murder for attacking two men, one in Umlazi on March 21, 2011, and the other in Lamontville on March 23.

Mental illness

Judge Irfaan Khalil said the defence team's argument that Ntshongwana was diagnosed with a mental illness before his crimes was not a strong argument.

"His mental illness was not of an extreme nature and could be controlled to a large degree," he said.

Describing the mental control, Khalil told how Ntshongwana raped one of his victims for three consecutive days, ensuring he was not nabbed by authorities.

"He took her to his home and checked before dragging her into his home. While there he raped her without a condom, smothered himself with yogurt and forced her to perform oral sex on him," he said. 

Khalil further stated the barbarity of the crimes, including the beheading and attempted beheading of victims, outweighed the arguments for appeal.

The axe was later found stashed in a dog kennel at the back of the property.

"The applicant carried an axe around and purposefully stalked those he could overpower. The chopping wounds and beheadings show a brutal killer.

"He was methodical, rational and calculated in committing these crimes. I do not see another court finding a different judgment given all the evidence in this case. His leave to appeal is dismissed," Khalil concluded.

(File photo)

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