Senekal violence: Second suspect granted bail

A police vehicle lies turned on its side after the protest outside the court where Brendin Horner's suspected killers appeared turned violent. Picture: Tracy-Lee Stark

Stefanus Johannes Fourie faces charges of public violence, arson, malicious damage to property and attempted murder.

The second suspect linked to the chaos that played out at the Senekal Magistrate’s Court in Free State two weeks ago has been granted bail, after making a brief appearance in the same court on Monday.

Stefanus Johannes Fourie was granted R15,000 bail after being arrested last Friday. He faces charges of public violence, arson, malicious damage to property and attempted murder.

The 33-year-old suspect resides in Senekal and owns a towing service.

Meanwhile, the first suspect, André Pienaar, who was accused of inciting violence, was granted bail earlier on Monday amounting to R15,000.

Pienaar’s bail application was initially denied last Tuesday, which prompted him to approach the Free State High Court in Bloemfontein.

The Senekal court had initially denied Pienaar bail, after it found that there was a likelihood of public outcry if he was released, while he could also possibly interfere with witnesses.

The state had argued that the seriousness of the charges against the farmer also justified the restriction of his liberties.

Pienaar, who is facing a charge of attempted murder, public violence and malicious damage to property, will be back in court on 20 November.

Background

On 6 October, farmers descended on the court for the first appearance of two suspects in the death of 22-year-old farm manager Brendin Horner.

They attempted to get to the suspects in the court’s holding cells, leading to clashes with police, resulting in one police van being overturned and set alight.

The violent protests had Police Minister Bheki Cele calling for swift action in response to the matter.

Horner’s body was discovered tied to a pole, with several stab wounds and head injuries earlier this month, which has caused outrage among the farming community as it finds itself under siege by criminal attackers.

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