Eastern Cape – Four men who are suspected to have been involved in the killing of a police officer in Cala, Eastern Cape on Friday have been remanded in custody by the Cradock Magistrate’s Court today (Monday).
Constable Joshua Gungqa was shot killed on Friday, 17 June 2016 when a group of about seven armed men stormed into Spar in Cala. While they wrestled with Gungqa in an attempt to disarm him, the off duty police officer was shot and fatally wounded. One alleged suspect was also shot killed at the scene. The suspects then allegedly took an undisclosed amount from one of the tills and then fled the scene with the deceased constable’s firearm.
On Saturday an intelligence driven operation was conducted by members of the Hawks in conjunction with the Queenstown Public Order Policing (POP) and the Cradock K9 units. Members then obtained information concerning the location of Gungqa’s service pistol.
A roadblock was subsequently set and resulted in the arrest of Masithembele Mbali (37), Xolisile Maawu (31), Simphiwe Mkheselele (32) and Cingile Jamda (32). Two 9 millimetre pistols were found in their possession.
The quartet, who have been charged with armed robbery and murder, will appear again in the Cala Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday.
The fifth suspect, a 42-year-old man, was arrested between 01:00 and 02:00 on Monday morning by the members of the Ngcobo and Cala police stations in conjunction with the Queenstown Public Order Policing members.
The suspect led the police to the spot where he and his accomplices abandoned their gateway vehicle which they used during the robbery. A Nissan Hardbody was found burnt and dumped into the Tsomo River. The man also led the police to another site where they dumped a body of a 36-year-old man whom they had also killed.
He will join his co-accused in the Cala Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday.