Africa

South African man jailed for Terreblanche murder

  • 22 August 2012
  • From the section Africa

A court in South Africa has sentenced a black farm worker to life in prison for the murder of white supremacist leader Eugene Terreblanche.

The judge ruled that Chris Mahlangu killed Terreblanche with an axe following a pay dispute in April 2010.

He rejected Mahlangu's argument that he carried out the murder in self-defence after Terreblanche had raped him.

The killing highlighted South Africa's fragile race relations, more than 15 years after white minority rule ended.

Outside court, about 20 white protesters carried a dummy of a black man with a rope around his neck with a sign that read "Hang Mahlangu".

Judge John Horn said the murder was not racially motivated.

A second man, who was a minor at the time of the attack, was given a two-year suspended for house-breaking.

Prosecutors said Mahlangu and his co-accused broke into Terreblanche's home in the north-western town Ventersdorp and hacked him to death with an axe.

Terreblanche was found with his underpants pulled down and a post-mortem report revealed he had suffered 28 injuries.

His Afrikaner Weerstandsbeweging (AWB) organisation waged a violent campaign to resist the end of apartheid and the establishment of democratic rule in 1994.

Terreblanche spent three years in jail after the 2001 attempted murder of a farm worker.

Racial tensions resurfaced in South Africa after his death.

His supporters vowed to avenge his death while some black people declared Mahlangu a hero.

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