How Can Johannesburg Cops Call Five Similar Gay Murders “Unrelated”?

Over the last 18 months Johannesburg, South Africa has had five murders against gay men—each of which has occurred in very similar ways: police find each man bound and usually strangled, with no sign of forced entry and almost no theft, implying that the victim knew his killer. So how is it that despite the similarities local police have ruled out the possibility of a serial murderer?

According to Lieutenant-Colonel Lungelo Dlamini, one person could not have responsible for all the killings. In fact he says that one man is already on trial for one of the murders, two others involved in another murder have been extradited, and police have leads for possible suspects in the remaining homicides.

Dlamini’s conclusion also seems plausible considering the varying modus operandi used in two of the slayings—in one, the murderer poured acid over the victim’s dead body and in the most recent killing, the man was much older than the other victims and died of blunt force trauma to the head rather than strangulation. How gruesome.

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