Ovitoto suspected cattle rustlers granted bail

The four male suspected cattle rustlers who were arrested on Saturday morning after they were allegedly found in possession of 13 stolen livestock at Ovitoto, were each granted bail of N.dollars 8 000 by the Okahandja Magistrate's Court.

The accused are Immanuel Kukuri, 43, Rudolf Katjingisiua, 22, Thikameni Teuetjiua, 26, and the 21-year-old Tjondo Ngombe.

The four appeared before the Okahandja Magistrate, Khaepriums Swartz on Monday afternoon who also explained to them their legal right to engage services of a private lawyer; apply for a State funded lawyer through the Ministry of Justice's Directorate of Legal Aid or defend themselves in court.

The four opted to defend themselves in court.

Swartz then postponed their case to 10 February 2020 for further police investigations in the matter, while public prosecutor, Hilma Mwata represented the State.

Spokesperson of the Namibian Police Force (NamPol) in the Otjozondjupa Region, Inspector Maureen Mbeha in an interview with Nampa on Saturday said the suspects allegedly on 13 November this year had cut open the fence of Farm Midgard and led out 20 heads of cattle valued at N.dollars 140 000.

Mbeha said the police together with some local farmers and the anti-stock theft group teamed up to track down the suspects' who were walking on foot with the livestock.

On Saturday morning, the police found a total of 13 cattle out of the 20 stollen in the kraal of Kukuri at Ovitoto, Mbeha said.

The 13 cattle with an estimated value of N.dollars 91 000 were then recovered by the police from his kraal and the three other accomplices also arrested at Ovitoto on a stock theft case and possession of stolen livestock that same Saturday, Mbeha added.

She said a search for the other seven cattle which are still missing is ongoing, while the 13 recovered already handed over to the rightful owner with their ear tags.

Mbeha is now calling on farmers in the region to put extra protective measures of their livestock, to count them on daily basis and patrol their farms, saying since September this year there is a sharp increase in cases of stock theft all over the region.