Victims’ remains mutilated, charred beyond recognition
In a gruesome early morning discovery, the brutalised bodies of two suspected murder victims, both injured beyond recognition, were found at two separate locations in Motherwell on the outskirts of Port Elizabeth yesterday.
Police, who are investigating the possibility that one of the victims was tortured, launched a major investigation into the deaths yesterday, but have not yet established whether their deaths were linked.
The bodies were discovered separately in two open fields which are about two kilometres apart, by Motherwell residents between 7am and 9am.
According to police, preliminary investigation has shown that one body was that of a woman, believed to be about 50 years old.
The age of the other body — the charred remains of a man – has not yet been determined.
Describing the discovery of the first body, in NU10, police spokesman Andre Beetge said: “Residents found the partially clothed body of an adult female and alerted police.
“The woman appears to have been badly assaulted with several broken bones,” he said.
“It is unclear whether the woman was murdered in the field or at a different location and later dumped there.”
Beetge confirmed that both the woman’s arms had been broken and that pieces of her skin were missing.
“We are investigating whether she was tortured but at this stage the autopsy [postmortem) still has to be done.”
Beetge said that by 9am, the charred remains of the man’s body had been found near Tyinira Street, NU8. “The man had been wrapped in wire and gagged before, we suspect, being set alight,” Beetge said.
“There is nothing at this stage to suggest that the incidents are linked, however this cannot be ruled out,” he said.
Police suspect that flammable liquid was used as a fire accelerant.
“All avenues are being investigate and vigilante justice cannot yet be ruled out as a motive,” Beetge said.
Both murders were believed to have occurred on Sunday night or early on Monday morning.
Anyone with information is requested to contact investigator Constable Siyabonga Maganuka on 082 388 5221.