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Missing Rachel Saunders' body identified

Media Statement from Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation
South African Police Service


An extensive search for the missing Rachel Saunders (63), has finally yielded results.

A multi-pronged investigation by the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation and the South African Police Service’s Forensic Science Laboratory has last week led to the positive identification of the mortal remains of Rachel Saunders who was allegedly kidnapped in February 2018 together with her husband Rodney Saunders (72), in KwaZulu-Natal.

Rodney’s body was identified in April this year after investigations led to the arrest of four suspects; Sayfudeen Aslam Del Vecchio (38), Fatima Patel (27), Jackson Ahmad Mussa (36), and Thembamandla Kwanele Xulu (19).

Xulu subsequently entered into a plea bargain with the state in terms of Section 105A of the Criminal Procedure Act and he was convicted and sentenced on May 25 to three (3), years’ imprisonment, suspended for five (5), years for illegal possession of stolen property (victims’ cell phones).                                                                                               

The other three accused remain in custody and they are expected to appear at the Verulam Magistrate’s Court on 24 August 2018, to face a raft of charges including; kidnapping, robbery with aggravating circumstances two counts of murder, possession of stolen property.




Media enquiries: Captain Lloyd Ramovha - 071 481 3518