A woman who arranged for three hitmen to kidnap and murder her husband has been given a life sentence by Mpumalanga Division of the High Court sitting in Nelspruit.

50-year-old Smangele Shongwe was convicted of masterminding the murder of her husband, 48-year-old Vusi Mona, in February 2017.

Three hitmen were hired to do the killing

According to police spokesperson Brigadier Leonard Hlathi, the court heard how Mona was kidnapped from his house at Kanyamazane on 14 February and later found murdered in Pienaar.

“Shongwe hired three hitmen who kidnapped and murdered her husband on [that] day, actions which sent shockwaves [through] the community as Mona was a well-known person in Pienaar and also a local teacher,” Hlathi said.

Given a life sentence plus 28 years for the murder

Shongwe was also convicted on charges of house robbery, robbery with a firearm, kidnapping, unlawful possession of a firearm, and unlawful possession of ammunition. For these offences she was given an additional 28 years in prison.

For the purposes of sentencing, these will run concurrently with the life sentence handed down by the court.

Man gets 18 years for stabbing his girlfriend

Meanwhile, in another court case in Mpumalanga related to the murder of a partner, the Mpumalanga Division of the High Court sitting in Delmas sentenced 43-year-old Jantjie Mei Mahlangu to 18 years in prison for the murder of his girlfriend, 37-year-old Gladys Mtsweni, at Kwaggafontein in March 2019.

“He stabbed Mtsweni to death, covered her body with a blanket and dumped it next to the road nearby. Police connected all the dots and built a strong case against him, hence his sentencing,” Hlathi said.

Mpumalanga Provincial Commissioner of Police, Lieutenant General Mondli Zuma, lauded the sterling work done by the Department of Justice, NPA and the investigators in securing the convictions.

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Presh JM Reporter

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