Unrest looter sentenced to six years imprisonment ‘as a warning to others’

Mvelo Majola was sentenced to six years imprisonment after he pleaded guilty to the theft of a motor vehicle during the deadly July unrest in 2021. The State argued for a custodial sentence.


National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson Natasha Ramkisson-Kara said Majola was arrested after being caught in possession of a Hino truck – one of nine vehicles stolen from Pharmed Pharmaceuticals in Riverhorse Valley, Nandi Drive.

“In his plea, Majola said, he knew of some people that participated in the looting spree, and one of them had given him the vehicle,” said Ramkisson-Kara.

The accused was arrested a few days after the vehicle was stolen when the police stopped him and asked him about the branded vehicle. His answers were not to their satisfaction and they called the number branded on the vehicle who informed them that the truck was stolen during the unrest looting.

The owner of the truck could positively identify the vehicle. Majola told the police he wanted to use it to visit some of his friends and family and abandon it once he was done with it.

“In aggravation of sentence, Regional Court Prosecutor Vishalen Moodley told the court that, thee looting and theft during the unrest were done opportunistically with no regard for rule of law or people’s belongings,” said the NPA spokesperson.

Moodley asked the court to pass a custodial sentence as a warning to the others who participated in the “reckless behaviour.”

At least 342 people died during the civil unrest of July 2021, which began in KwaZulu-Natal and spread to Gauteng.

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