‘Racial assault’ accused pleads guilty

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Forty-seven-year-old Margate resident Petrus Opperman appeared in the Ramsgate High Court on Wednesday in connection with the death of 26-year-old Lwandile Mpofu in a Margate bar brawl two years ago.  He pleaded guilty to a charge of assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm.   He accepted a plea agreement of a R10 000 fine or an alternative prison sentence of three years, half of which would be suspended for five years.  Two of the three counts against him were withdrawn, and he was also unfit to own a fire-arm.  His co-accused, 33-year-old Jake Putter, Douw van der Walt, of the same age, and Carel Volschenk ( 49) are due to appear in the same court on charges of murder.

At the time of the incident in August 2011, there was a public outcry because of the severity the assault, and, as became evident in court, it was racially motivated.

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