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Susan Malan

Death: June 11, 2011 (60)
Mooilande smallholdings, Vereeniging, Sedibeng District Municipality, Gauteng, South Africa (Murder - Farm Attack)
Immediate Family:

Wife of Jan Malan

Occupation: Court Clerk
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

About Susan Malan

Susan Malan (1951 - 2011)

Brief overview:

The bodies Susan (60), a court clerk for 20 years, and her husband Jan (64), a former policeman, were found by their domestic worker, on their Mooilande smallholding outside Vereeniging, at 09h30 11th June 2011. A week prior, they had reported that their three dogs were poisoned, and an apparent death threat to the police, but were turned away because of jurisdiction problems. It appears that they were murdered with knives and an axe. Jan was stabbed in his left side and had cuts and hatchet wounds to his head. Susan's throat was slit with a scarf covering her head. Their eldest daughter, Minetta McLachlan (39), said one of her parents’ neighbours called her with the news. Their domestic, Jacobed, wanted to fetch the laundry in the house, and she found Susan's body in the passageway and Jan's body between the dining and living room. McLachlan immediately called her sister, Maryke Mortagua (33), and McLachlan’s husband Ian (43) went into the house while she waited outside. “Ian said a scarf covered my mom’s face and he could see wounds on my father’s face.” McLachlan said, “Two of my friends in the Vanderbijlpark police accompanied my father to the smallholding, where they found several bones with Temik, a two-step poison.” “Someone told the domestic worker at church that my parents would be next and we didn’t know what to make of it." The family hired a security guard to look after the smallholding at night. He was there until Thursday but they let him go after laser alarms were installed on the yard. "We assumed someone would try something at night and not during the day.” The attackers presumably broke a window to gain entry to the house and wait for the Malan's. The couple stopped their car and were carrying groceries into the house when they were overpowered. “My father’s wallet is still with the groceries on the kitchen cupboard. My mom usually first goes to put her handbag away in the bedroom and it was found next to her body in the passageway,” said McLachlan. The family said it didn’t look like anything was stolen, but a police officer confirmed that the bedrooms had been ransacked. The couple’s firearms were still locked away in the safe and the car was not stolen. Police spokesperson constable Teboho Lephoto said they would investigate why Malan was turned away when he wanted to lay a charge. Police questioned two young men from the area on Sunday night, but they were released. VEREENIGING regional court session - One of the 3 co-accused murderers confessed he was ‘shaking too much to slaughter Susan as he had been told to do.’ So his comrade Motsekua Joseph Thabanyane cut her throat instead. This was the chilling testimony of Lehlohonolo Johannes Pula (29). Pula was tried separately when he admitted guilt on two charges of murder, housebreaking and armed robbery. He said in his plea-explanation that he and Thabanyane just happened to be breaking into the farm ‘looking for money’, when the couple drove up and they decided on the spur of the moment to kill them. His two other co-accused, Vakele Mngxongo (19) and Thabanyane deny guilt and had to re-appear in court again on July 15. Some important details were missing from Lula’s plea-explanation which make his statement very contradictory: Lula said in his plea-explanation that he and Thabanyane went to the Malan's to buy cigarettes. They broke in when they found no-one at home. Thabanyane broke the window and Pula followed him inside. “He said I must look for the money." Pula climbed out of the window and spotted the couple’s car. He asked Thabanyane what they should do and Pula testified that he himself had then replied: ‘now we are going to kill them.’ They agreed that Pula was to grab Mrs Malan while his comrade concentrated on Mr Malan. Mr Malan put the groceries in the kitchen, his wife walked to the living room. She was ambushed and grabbed by Pula, who held her while Thabanyane - in Pula’s words - had ‘slaughtered Mr Malan with the knife, cutting him several times, according to the plea-explanation. “Thabanyane came to me and said I had to slaughter her. I could not because I was shaking too much. He took back the knife and cut through her throat. However there’s a lot more to this story: Just after the double-murder, statements were made to the news media by local residents and relatives that nothing was robbed. Susan's handbag was found next to her body, Jan's wallet was still atop the kitchen cupboard with the bagged groceries. Their gun still was inside the safe. It’s very relevant that the couple had received a death threat, and that their dogs were poisoned a week earlier. Maid received warning at church that her employers ‘would be next’ after dogs were poisoned:

Brief Biography:

  • Other Victims/Family
  • Funeral/Memorial
  • The Farm/Smallholding
  • The Region (Land disputes, other incidents etc.)

Attack Details:

  • Date and time of attack
  • Weapons
  • Items Stolen
  • Investigative officer/SAPS Case No:
  • Torture, Gratuitous violence
  • Indications of Hate Crime? Threats etc.

Perpetrator details:

  • Number and Descriptions
  • Arrests
  • Name/s and age/s of Perpetrator/s
  • Country of origin of Perpetrator/s
  • Trial/Conviction

Additional Biographical Information:

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Susan Malan's Timeline

June 11, 2011
Age 60
Vereeniging, Sedibeng District Municipality, Gauteng, South Africa