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Court to decide on Scotts’ trial fate

by Sunday Express
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Tefo Tefo

THE High Court will on Tuesday this week decide whether to try separately double ritual murder suspects Lehlohonolo Scott and his mother ‘Malehlohonolo Scott due to the latter’s ill health.

This was after the Scotts’ lawyer, Advocate Thulo Hoeane, presented a doctor’s report on Friday to the presiding judge, Justice Teboho Moiloa, stating that ‘Malehlohonolo had been diagnosed with tuberculosis and thus not fit enough to attend trial.

Lehlohonolo (30) and ’Malehlohonolo (60) face charges of murdering fellow Koalabata residents Moholobela Seetsa (13) and Mohata (22) in January and June 2012 respectively.

The case was supposed to proceed before the High Court on 22 March 2017, but had to be postponed to 28 March 2017 due to ‘Malehlohonolo’s illness.

This was after the judge ordered that she be undergo medical examination to ascertain her state of health.

On 28 March 2017 she was again reported ill and the case was postponed to last Wednesday. It was also established that ’Malehlohonolo was still not well and the lawyers had to report back to court on Friday.

On Friday, Advocate Hoeane presented a doctor’s report stating that ‘Malehlohonolo was still not fit enough to attend the trial.

Part of the report reads: “This is to certify that we have diagnosed Mrs Scott with TB and she is undergoing treatment at Mafeteng Hospital and with Dr N. Makoa’s supervision.

“She is currently unable to present herself to court and will be liable for review in two months when she completes the intensive phase of treatment.”

Justice Moiloa scheduled a meeting on Tuesday to discuss whether the duo could be tried separately.

The Scotts were arrested on 12 July 2012 following the discovery of Seetsa and Mohata’s mutilated bodies in Koalabata. The mutilation of the bodies led to speculation the two had been killed for ritual purposes.

In addition to murder, Lehlohonolo also faces the charge of unlawful escape from Maseru Central Prison on 14 October 2012 while awaiting trial.

After almost two years on the run, Lehlohonolo was arrested in Durban, South Africa on 6 April 2014 and lost his fight against extradition in the Verulam Magistrate’s Court on 5 May 2015. He was extradited to Lesotho on 21 October 2015, where he remains in custody.

For her part, ’Malehlohonolo was released on stringent bail conditions in August 2013.

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