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Vlakfontein residents vow to shut down court after Khupe murder charges dropped

The National Prosecuting Authority withdrew charges on Friday, saying it had no reasonable prospect of successfully prosecuting him.

Fita Khupe at his second court appearance on 12 November 2018 in the Lenasia Magistrates Court. Mabaso faces charges of murder and theft. Picture: Abigail Javier/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Angry residents of Vlakfontein threatened to shut down the Lenasia Magistrates Court on Monday following the decision by the State to drop all charges against the murder accused Fita Khupe.

Khupe was believed to be the mastermind behind the killing of seven members of the Khoza family.

The National Prosecuting Authority withdrew charges on Friday, saying it had no reasonable prospect of successfully prosecuting him.

His co-accused, Ernest Mabaso, died earlier this year in an alleged suicide.

The community of Vlakfontein said if nothing is done to address what they described as the miscarriage of justice, they would lock down the Lenasia Magistrates Court and ensure that no case was processed.

One community member said: "On Monday, we are going to Lenasia Magistrates Court. There is no case that will be heard until we get answers."

On Friday, residents blockaded roads following the announcement and called for the justice minister to address them.

Khupe was the last suspect in the murder case of the Khoza family who were killed and buried inside their home last year.

JUSTICE SYSTEM FAILED US, WE DON'T FEEL SAFE

Residents said they no longer felt safe because the law seems to protect criminals.

The African National Congress Youth League’s Thulani Mbatha said: “Our justice system has failed us. They released Fita Khupe who has killed seven Khoza family members. How is it possible for our justice system to release that person?”

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