Officer reflects on case

A murder took place in Trek Road in Higgovale last week.

Sunday August 4, marked two years since the death of the former chief financial officer of Naspers, Eric Wiese.

The Higgovale resident was found dead at his Trek Road home after an apparent robbery in 2017. He had been beaten to death and several items were missing from his property.

On Thursday August 1, the Western Cape High Court sentenced the killers, Nomfundo Mtshawu and her boyfriend Vuyolwethu Mgemane, to life and 25 years behind bars. Mtshawu was handed a 25-year sentence for murder and 10 years for robbery while Mgemane was handed a life sentence for killing Mr Wiese and an additional 15 years for the count of robbery.

Warrant Officer Shaun Bardien from Cape Town Central police who investigated this case said he had been expecting a lesser sentence for Mtshawu but they had expected a life sentence for Mgemane because he hadn’t shown any remorse.

Warrant Officer Bardien said the convicted killers had been very angry with him after the sentencing.

“They were swearing at me, but I deal with it. It’s part of the job and I don’t take it personally. The only thing I take personally are the cases that I have to deal with,” he said.

Warrant Officer Bardien said he’d been with the Wiese family from the day it happened and had testified in court in the murder trial. He said he was quite happy when they were found guilty.

“This means that that they cannot hurt anybody else out there and justice has been served,” he said.

Reflecting on the investigation process, Warrant Officer Bardien praised the provincial forensic task team who worked through the nights on that weekend assisting the police.

He said he spent a whole week in Gugulethu trying to track down the pair. “I stored everything in my mind when I watched the footage and when I saw them, I told our partners in Gugulethu that it was them. I remember the girlfriend making one comment to me and said: ‘I didn’t kill him, I only held him’ and because of that she was found guilty of murder,” he said.

Warrant Officer Bardien said even though Mgemane had tried to clear Mtshawu of the crime it didn’t work because they had both had a part in it.

Warrant Officer Bardien said he was happy that the family would finally get some closure.

“I know this won’t bring a husband, father and grandfather back, but at least they know that the law has not failed them,” he said.

Mr Wiese’s widow, Sannie Wiese told the Cape Argus that they were satisfied with the sentences. “It is the end of a chapter, because it has been a very long road. Such a vicious death is unfortunately something that is happening to many in the country. But we look ahead and hope that things will go better in the country, so that people don’t walk down the same set of steps that we did,” she said.