THE three men, who brutally attacked and injured the 75-year-old Andries van Vuuren and his wife Nina on Farm Kentani in the Kalkrand district on Wednesday, were remanded in custody after the made their first appearance in the Mariental Magistrate’s Court on Friday.
The 40-year-old Alfius Kalola, Selestinus Eita (38) and Dawid Maliki were arrested after a relentless search by the farming community and the Namibian Police. The first two suspects were arrested within hours of the attack after the stolen car they were driving was disabled by several rifle shots fired at its back wheels.
The third suspect managed to escape the initial arrest on foot and was tracked down by a police dog handler where he was hiding in weaverbird nest in the top of a lonely tree on the barren dunes in the Kalahari Desert.
The Namibian Police dispatched a helicopter and tracking teams with dogs to hunt down the last suspect.
During their first appearance in the Mariental Magistrate’s Court the accused persons were formally informed that they each face a count robbery with aggravating circumstances, a count of attempted murder, a count of assault with the intent to cause grievous bodily harm, a count of theft of a motor vehicle and two counts each of kidnapping.
Despite being informed about the seriousness of the charges he is facing, Kalola indicated that he will be handling his own defence in the matter. Maliki and Eita informed the court that they will be applying for state sponsored lawyers to assist them with their case.
The prosecutor informed the presiding magistrate that the investigation into the matter is not yet completed and that the accused persons should be given the opportunity to finalise their application for legal aid.
Before they were remanded in custody until 11 December this year the accused persons were informed that it is their right to bring a formal bail application before court before that date.