x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Police still blank on three-year-old murder

Police in South Africa are no closer to finding whoever committed the "highly planned" murder of a Dubai resident and his cousin.

Police in South Africa are no closer to finding whoever committed the "highly planned" murder of a Dubai resident and his cousin. More than three years after the deaths of Mohammad Manzar Khan and Rizwan Thathiya, officials have conceded the professional nature of the murder has left them with few clues. The inspector leading the investigation, Leon Pretorius, said recent contact he made with Interpol, the international law enforcement organisation, had not provided significant leads.

The bodies of the India-born Mr Khan, 25, and his cousin were discovered in August 2006 in the boot of a Mercedes car abandoned near Heidelberg, a town 50km south-east of Johannesburg. Mr Khan had arrived in South Africa two days earlier. Police said there were no clues at the scene. "From the beginning, it was very, very cleverly done," Insp Pretorius said. "It shows to me it was a highly planned murder."

In keeping with South African police procedures, Insp Pretorius said, the case would be looked at again regularly, although he said finding whoever was responsible was "difficult at this stage". "Every three months for a period of 10 years, that's what we'll do," he said. "Just to see if something comes up and then we can maybe make some progress." Police were told by friends of the victims that the men had been trying to set up an import-export business with a man known only as "Peggy" who was thought to have left South Africa soon after the murders. Efforts to trace the man have proved unsuccessful.

@Email:dbardsley@thenational.ae