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'Gay murders a serious worry'

Rights group OUT said the gay community in South Africa was not safe as is thought.

Police officers have been called incompetent or homophobic, after the delay in making more arrests in the gang that is murdering homosexuals across the country. Picture: SAPA.
Gay murders
Local

JOHANNESBURG - Gay rights group, OUT, said the death of another gay man in Cape Town should be a wake up call to police investigating a gang targeting homosexual men countrywide.

The director of the rights group, Dawie Nel, said because of a lack of arrests, police were displaying incompetence or an underlying homophobia.

"I think it’s definitely a case of police either being homophobic, incompetent or not doing their job."

Graham Flax was found dead in his Seapoint home on Sunday night after having invited his killer into his home.

Flax’s murder bears striking resemblances to the other killings that have taken place, even though it has not been confirmed whether his death is linked to a gang that is murdering homosexuals in the same way across the country.

All the other victims were found bound and strangled after having invited their killers into their homes.

Police have arrested three men in Gauteng suspected to be part of the gang.

No further arrests have been made since that breakthrough in November, 2012. 

'GAY MEN SHOULD BE CAREFUL'

Police have yet to comment on whether the murder of Flax is linked to the serial murders.

Law enforcement officers announced last year that a task team would be asked to investigate the murders, committed by the 'gang.'

They arrested three suspects for the murder of Orange Grove resident, Barney van Heerden.

Meanwhile, OUT also said they were worried about the safety of homosexuals across the country.

It said members of the gay community should be even more careful.

'POLICE NEED TO ACT'

The Democratic Alliance (DA) has joined gay rights groups in condemning police for their seemingly stalled investigation into a series of murders in Gauteng.

The DA Shadow minister of police Dianne Kohler Barnard also said it was time to take the murders of the gay men very seriously.

"The fact that they are not coming to grips with this particular case tells me they're not taking it seriously because it involves gay men."

She also said there was a failure to communicate between provincial police officers, about the murders that were happening in different provinces.

(Edited by Katleho Mogase)

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