Tuesday, January 21, 2003

Massacre victims under guard

CAPE TOWN — The two surviving victims of Monday morning's Sea Point massacre made it through the night, although one of the men is still in a critical condition. Both are under police guard.

Philippa Johnson of Groote Schuur Hospital said on Tuesday that one of the victims, believed to be 47-year-old Eric, who apparently ran the all-male massage parlour, Sizzlers, from a house in Graham Road, Sea Point, was "critical" in an intensive-care unit on Tuesday.

"We don't know what the prognosis is," said Johnson.

The other victim, a man in his 20s, was recovering in the trauma unit and was in a stable condition.

She said there were police guards in the trauma unit and in the ICU.

They are the only two survivors of Monday morning's execution-style killings in which 10 men were tied up and shot in the head.

Some of them had their throat cut. Six of the men were found dead in the house and two more died later in hospital.

The Cape Times on Tuesday quoted a senior Gauteng police officer as saying that there were links between the Fast Guns gang in Johannesburg and Cape Flats gangs such as the Americans.

Theory that gangs swop hits

The link comes after police reported on Monday that one of the men being sought in connection with the "executions" had a Fast Guns tattoo on his right hand.

The Gauteng policeman was quoted as saying that, through contacts, it was possible for the gang to assist in a hit in Cape Town and vice-versa.

Captain Etienne Terblanche said in Cape Town, however, that the information did not come from police sources and most of it was speculation.

Terblanche said police were still looking for four white men who were seen leaving Graham Road in a white BMW.

One suspect had a tattoo of a curled-up snake on his upper left arm, and the words "Fast Gun" tattooed on his right wrist. His hair was reddish, probably bleached, and he wore a goatee beard.

The second suspect was a thin man with a fair complexion who had a habit of sniffing.

The third suspect was tall and well-built with a shaven head and was possibly a bodybuilder while the fourth was described as well-built.

Terblanche said not all the victims of Monday morning's massacre had been identified yet. Many of the victims used aliases.

"We are still trying to trace relatives and friends of the victims. Anybody who may be able to identify some of the dead are asked to phone police at 021 430 3733, 021 935 9602 and 082 850 9674," he said.

The Gay and Lesbian Alliance on Tuesday denounced a statement by the Gay Equality Project on Monday that the police tended to show a lack in investigating the element of homophobia in crimes against gays or lesbians.

GLA first vice-president Joe Chauke said the leadership of the GLA had met some of the investigating officers and "clearly they appeared to be non-homophobic".

"The so-called Gay Equality Project saw this gay massacre as an opportunity to score some free media exposure by making such comments regarding the SAPS (SA Police Service). Such comments are unfair," said Chauke.

The owner of a chemist around the corner from the massacre house said most of the victims were his customers.

"They often telephoned me and said so and so had a problem. What can we treat him with?" said the chemist, who asked not to be named.

Bunches of flowers in fence

He and his staff were shocked when they heard the news.

Outside the massacre house, 7 Graham Road, everything appeared quiet on Tuesday morning.

Apart from a few passersby who stared at the house there was no activity.

Five policemen guarded the house, some drinking coffee, smoking cigarettes and reading the newspaper. "We can't tell you anything," one of them told a journalist.

Bunches of flowers were jammed into the picket fence of the house. Some contained sealed envelopes.

One envelope simply had the words "Fanie en Max en vriende", while another said: "Ons inige (sic) meegevoel" (Our deepest sympathies).

[World 2003] [News by region] [News by topic]

Created: January 24, 2003
Last modified: January 24, 2003
CSIS Commercial Sex Information Service
Box 3075, Vancouver, BC V6B 3X6
Tel: +1 (604) 488-0710