traffic corruption

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Gang Murders: Gqeberha suspects found guilty of triple murder

The gang’s conviction followed an intense police investigation that included the interception of their cellphone communication.

traffic corruption

Image via Adobe Stock

Members of the Gqeberha ‘Dustlifes’ gang have been found guilty of triple murders in the Port Elizabeth High Court this week.

Jermaine Mitchell,33, Glynn Simione Carelson,33, Wendell Jade Peterson,33, and Robin Edgar Taylor,24, were convicted of one count of murder, unlawful possession of a firearm and ammunition and contravention of the Prevention of Organised Crime Act. 

Their conviction followed intense police work, including the interception of cellphone communication, while police officers and their families were faced with several threats on their own lives during the investigation.

The gang planned and executed the killings on 14 September 2015.

The court further found Carelson, Peterson and Taylor guilty of two more counts of murder.

National Prosecuting Authority spokesperson, Anelisa Ngcakani, said Peterson was the kingpin of the Dustlifes criminal gang while Mitchell,  Carelson, Peterson and Taylor were members of the gang. 

Ngcakani said Carelson and Peterson had met on 14 September 2015, to plan the murder of Theodore Tupac Matthews, 26, Rajen Naidoo, 52, and Jermaine Jabilo Essau, 25. 

“On the same day, Mitchell provided Carelson with the murder firearm. Peterson monitored the movements of Matthews. He constantly updated Carelson and Taylor about Matthews movements,” Ngcakani said.

“He told them he was in a taxi and when the taxi stopped at the corner of Durban and Cottrell Road, Carelson and Taylor approached it and fired several shots at Matthews. He succumbed to his wounds,” Ngcakani said.

Later on during the same day, Mitchell, Carelson and Peterson went to search for Naidoo. Once they found him at Newton Park in Gqeberha, they shot him dead.

“Their murder spree for the day was rounded off at about 6.30pm when they proceeded to Gelvandale, Gqeberha, where they shot Essau to death,” Ngcakani added.

Ngcakani said motive for the Matthews and Essau murders was criminal gang related. 

“Peterson and his gang murdered Naidoo in order to claim a R30 000 reward which was offered by another criminal gang for his death,” Ngcakani said.  

Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions, Advocate Indra Goberdan welcomed the conviction. 

“This was the first Act 70 ( cellphone  interception) case in respect of gang activity in the division. It took a great deal of collaboration between Crime Intelligence, SAPS and prosecution team to thread together a web of  how the gangs operate clandestinely under a code of silence,”Goberdan said.

“The team effort from all quarters was phenomenal.  The prosecution team endured threats to their lives but continued to prosecute. I applaud Advocates Sandan and Landman on a job well executed and for standing strong while they and their families’ lives were threatened.”