Gory details of Riedel murders emerge

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Gory details of Riedel murders emerge

A female friend of one the alleged killers of the Riedel couple whose farmhouse was set alight with their bodies, testified yesterday how he described the events to her.

Loretta Hoases informed the High Court that she and her ex-boyfriend Riaan Rooi went to visit accused Bernadus Afrikaner (35) while he was locked up in Gobabis for stock theft in 2018. 

She told Windhoek High Court Judge Naomi Shivute that he called her to enquire whether Rooi had gotten hold of the “properties”. Hoases said she met up with Rooi at Witvlei, and he showed her items including duvets and pillows with matching cases, cash and a golden armband. When she enquired where the items came from, Rooi told her from the farm where Armin Siegfried Riedel (68) and his wife Brunhild Riedel (66) were killed on 20 January 2018.

Afrikaner and co-accused Salathiel Unaeb (47) allegedly burned the couple’s farmhouse to the ground, causing damage of more than N$500 000, after robbing the residence. 

Hoases informed the court that when she went to visit Afrikaner, he told her that the items came from the farmhouse. 

She further said that he informed her  that he and Unaeb ambushed the “old lady” at the farm, and killed her and the “old man”. 

The witness continued that Afrikaner told her that he hid in the kitchen while the “old lady” was closing the chickens for the night. When she entered the kitchen, he then grabbed her and demanded money from her. 

Afrikaner further told her that the “old lady” told him they did not keep money at the farm, and the children usually had the money. He forced her into the
bedroom, where he raped her, and then forced Unaeb to rape her as well. 

When Unaeb refused, he threatened him with a firearm. Unaeb then complied, the witness said as per Afrikaner’s narration of the events to her. 

Afrikaner then said the “old man” came in and he grabbed him as well, and demanded money from him. 

When the “old man” replied that they don’t keep money at the farm, he shot him.

The witness testified that Afrikaner explained to her how they ransacked
the house, and first took the stolen items to hide them, and then returned and poured diesel on the bodies of the deceased and inside the house, and set it alight. 

She further told the court about
certain instances when she would visit Afrikaner in jail, and he would give her pieces of paper upon which he had written directions to where the stolen loot was. However, she gave those to Chief Inspector Gawie Jantjies, who then collected the

Her testimony was also about sets of cutlery she was given by other friends of Afrikaner, which she also eventually handed over to Jantjies.     

Afrikaner and Unaeb are facing two counts of murder, two counts of rape, one count of robbery with aggravating circumstances, one count of arson, one count of defeating the course of justice, three counts of contravening the Arms and Ammunition Act, and one count of assault by threat.

They allegedly stole various properties, including a pistol, knives, bedding and a washing basin. 

The contravention of the Arms and Ammunition Act charges relate to them having a firearm and ammunition without a licence, and selling a firearm to another person without a licence.  

The assault charge relates to the threat they allegedly made to a fellow employee who witnessed part of the attack not to reveal what he saw. 

They pleaded not guilty at the start of their trial. The prosecution is represented by Advocate Ethel Ndlovu and the defence by Melissa Windisch from the Pack and Company Incorporated law firm, instructed by Legal Aid. The accused remain in custody.

– rrouth@nepc.com.na