Men accused of Chatsworth pensioner’s murder ‘stole crockery to hide fingerprints’

Lungani Basil Underhill, Fredboy Msomi and Sibonelo Braveman Underhill in the Durban High Court. Picture: African News Agency/ANA

Durban – The three men accused of the murder of a much loved Chatsworth principal took the crockery items that they had moments earlier had tea from when they fled the scene in an effort to hide their fingerprints, the Durban High Court heard on Tuesday.

Detective Sunil Maharaj told the Durban High Court on Tuesday that he recovered a coffee mug, a saucer, one tall glass, one side plates, and five plates in the bushes at Pilgrim Sports Grounds.

The stash was found shortly after he arrested Lungani Basil Underhill an estate agent believed to be the mastermind behind the robbery and murder of Gonapathy Pillay, and attempted murder of her husband Loganathan Pillay, 70.

Last week, the court heard that the couple offered their attackers to have tea and cake shortly after they were attacked at their home.

Lungani Basil Underhill arrived at the couple’s home in September 2017 with his cousin, Sibonelo Braveman Underhill and Fredboy Msomi who the Pillay’s were told was a potential buyer for their home. A third man, known only as Thembinkosi was also present but has evaded arrest and is at large.

Pillay who survived after he was stabbed 18 times told the court last week of how Basil repeatedly stabbed him in the body while he lay face down on the bathroom floor, and helplessly watched as his wife was strangled with her scarf.

He told the court that he stayed still on the bathroom floor until he heard a vehicle leave before he could drag himself to activate the panic button.

Maharaj identified several items presented in court as exhibits which he allegedly found in the bushes, including a kitchen knife that was allegedly used to stab Pillay.

Maharaj said he was led to the sporting fields by Lungani Basil Underhill.

Pillay and members of his family were in court and sat in the front seat of the public gallery as Maharaj led evidence of how the trio was arrested and subsequently led the police to the items they allegedly took from the house, including a bakkie, necklace and plasma television.

The trial continues.

By IOL News.

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