3 arrests after deaths of 21 teens in a South African tavern
Last updated on September 16th, 2022 at 10:53 am
Police in South Africa said on Wednesday they had detained three persons following the inexplicable killings last month of 21 teenagers in a township tavern.
According to a police statement, the 52-year-old proprietor of the pub and two 33- and 34-year-old staff were arrested recently for allegedly violating alcohol sale restrictions. However, the arrested individuals were not named.
The proprietor will appear in court on August 19th on charges linked to selling or giving alcohol to minors, while the two staff have each been handed a 2,000-rand ($118) fine.
The Eastern Cape Liquor Board has filed a criminal complaint against the Enyobeni Tavern for allegedly supplying alcoholic beverages to minors, according to police. A summons for the owner’s immediate arrest and presence in court was handed to him after investigators issued fines to the two employees totaling 2,000 South African rands (about $118).
On August 19th, the owner will appear at the East London Magistrate Court. Police say that if any of the employees refuse to pay the fee, they will be summoned to the same courthouse on the same day.
Twenty-one teenagers, twelve girls, and nine boys, died in mysterious circumstances. Early on June 26th, they were discovered near Scenery Park’s Enyobeni Tavern.
There were seventeen people killed right there on the spot, and four more died while being transferred or treated at hospitals, according to authorities.
They were all under the legal drinking age of eighteen in South Africa, according to the police.
The Buffalo City Metropolitan Municipality staged a mass funeral for the victims last week in East London. The memorial service for the young victims drew tens of thousands of people, including South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, who delivered the eulogy. At separate cemeteries, the dead were interred in private ceremonies.
As of Wednesday, toxicology findings were still pending. According to authorities, a stampede was ruled out due to the lack of significant injuries on the bodies.
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The investigation is ongoing, and police have refused to discuss the likely causes of death or the circumstances surrounding the incident.
“Just as we said in the beginning, the investigation is a process and needs to be treated with extreme care and wisdom so that we can achieve the desired outcomes, which all of us will be proud of. This is the beginning of the great work we are doing behind the scene.” A statement from the South African Police Service’s Eastern Cape provincial Commissioner, Lt. Gen. Nomthetheleli Mene.