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Sadia Sukhraj’s murder accused applies for legal aid attorney

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The man accused of the murder of Sadia Sukhraj, 9, made an application for a Legal Aid South Africa lawyer during his brief appearance in the High Court in Durban on Monday.

Sibonelo Mkhize, 35, is charged with murder and robbery with aggravating circumstances following Sadia’s death during a botched hijacking in Shallcross, Chatsworth, in May this year.

Mkhize’s accomplice, Siyabonga Bulose, was killed as the duo attempted to flee from the crime scene.

Judge Shyam Gyanda adjourned the case until December 3 “to appoint an officer from the Legal Aid office to represent you”.

Gyanda said Mkhize’s trial date would also be set on that date.

Mkhize remains in custody at Westville prison until then.

He was arrested by an off-duty police officer a short distance from Sadia’s grandparents’ home.

Several shots fired by father

She and her father, Shalendra, had stopped at her grandparents’ shortly before she headed to school.

That is when Mkhize and Bulose allegedly pounced, robbing and hijacking her father.

Also read: KZN father killed in front of his kids during botched hijacking

According to court papers, they demanded the car keys from Shalendra at gunpoint.

He threw the keys at them and they boarded the vehicle. While both were fleeing the scene with Sadia inside the vehicle, Shalendra fired several gunshots towards the driver with his licensed firearm, according to court papers.

Sadia was taken to a nearby hospital where she later succumbed to her injuries.

Her cause of death was a gunshot wound to the chest. Bulose died immediately after the car came to a stop. His cause of death was described as a penetrating gunshot wound to the pelvis.

Sadia’s death sparked massive public outcry over crime in Chatsworth.

The State is expected to call 33 witnesses to testify in the murder case.

Read more: State to call 33 witnesses in Sadia Sukhraj murder

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