Rapper Pitch Black Afro, real name Thulani Ngcobo, has accused the top cop who cracked the horrendous Rhodes Park murder-by-drowning and rape case of having forced a confession out of him.
The Soweto-born hitmaker stands accused of killing his wife, Catherine Modisane, at a B&B in Yeoville on December 31, 2018. His trial is under way in the South Gauteng High Court.
Ngcobo emerged from the holding cells on Monday in high spirits, greeting his mother and blowing a kiss to her. He cut a quiet figure once proceedings started. The State kicked off a trial within a trial, which would result in a ruling determining on whether the confession Ngcobo had made was admissible or not. Ngcobo wanted the court to rule the confession inadmissible, on the grounds that he did not make it in his own volition.
On the other hand, the State sought to have the confession admitted as part of evidence enough to nail the rapper for murder and defeating the ends of justice. Prosecutor Matshiliso Moleko led Captain Mbhazima Pila on testimony intended to prove that Ngcobo was not coerced to confess. Pila testified that he took Ngcobo from his cells to a magistrate’s office, where he made the confession. He said Ngcobo was not coerced in any way to confess.
“I didn’t assault him. He didn’t complain of injuries. I didn’t promise him anything should he make a confession,” Pila said. “I didn’t tell him what to say to the magistrate.”
But Ngcobo’s evidence was that Pila did more than just take him to the magistrate. His version was that the captain was one of six who coerced a confession from him, defence lawyer Rian Greyling told the court.
The group of Yeoville officers assaulted Ngcobo, handcuffed his hands behind a chair, withheld his insurance documents and told him he would get a lenient sentence if he confessed, Greyling submitted. Pila denied all of these, implying that Ngcobo’s recollection of events was manufactured in his head.
Greyling said the officer who played a leading role in the interrogation meant to coerce a confession boasted that he was involved in the Rhodes Park case. This officer told Ngcobo he was guilty and he should sign a statement to that effect, Greyling put it to Pila. “It’s not true,” Pila responded.
Continued Greyling: “He told the accused he’s a murderer.”
Pila stood his ground that this was further from the truth.
It later became clearer in court that the officer involved in the Rhodes Park case that Greyling mentioned was Constable Lufhuno Brian Sono. Proceedings in Ngcobo’s case will resume on Tuesday morning.
Source: The Star