Game farmer sentenced to three life terms for murder

South African Police Service

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Game farmer sentenced to three life terms for murder
Game farmer sentenced to three life terms for murder

Johan Pieter Sonnenberg (62), was sentenced by a High Court in Virginia for the murders of three men, Michael Grant (20), Jerome Desmond Grant (28) and Riaan Ruiters (23). The deceased were reported missing at Christiana SAPS in the North West back In February 2014.

Cristiana Police received information that they were last seen in February with Mr Pieter Sonnenberg (62) crossing over the bridge to his Game Farm Diamant on the border between Christiana in the North West and Hertzogville in the Free State.

A search Warrant was obtained by the Christiana Detectives to search at his Game Farm. Sterkfontein K9 unit joined by Christiana Diving Unit and Detectives, combed through the Game Farm with the help of members from Hertzogville and Christiana visible policing as well as Hertzogville Detectives.

During the search a foul smell was detected and National Forensic Services were contacted from Pretoria to help in exhumation of the bodies in the shallow graves. The then 58 year old game farm owner Johan Pieter Sonnenberg, was arrested for the murder of the three men. During the search at his house, police also found different types of ammunition.

Free State Provincial task Team led by Detective Lt Colonel Tankiso Sefuthi was entrusted with investigations and they made sure that justice is served. The court sentenced Sonnenberg (62) to 3 life imprisonment terms.

Free State Provincial Commissioner Lt General Moeketsi Sempe lauded the Task team allocated in investigating the case and had hope that the families of the three deceased will find closure.

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