Cops grill man over NIMT killings

The police have arrested a suspect in connection with the murders of Eckhart Mueller and Heimo Hellwig on the NIMT campus at Arandis on Monday.

18 April 2019 | Crime

The police are continuing their questioning of one of the two potential suspects arrested in connection with Monday's killings at the Namibian Institute of Mining and Technology (NIMT) main campus in Arandis.

NIMT executive director Eckhart Mueller and his deputy, Heimo Hellwig, were gunned down at the entrance of the campus when they arrived for work. Police spokesperson, Deputy Commissioner Edwin Kanguatjivi, confirmed yesterday they brought in two men for questioning on Tuesday night.

One of the men was taken into custody at Karibib and the second at Tsumeb, on the suspicion that he might have had prior knowledge of the murders. However, the second man was released after he was questioned, Kanguatjivi said. A message circulating on social media, purportedly written on 26 December 2017, appears to warn that “blood is going splash” at NIMT during April this year. “You guys don't forget to pray for our good NIMT officials, mostly just their souls. Something will happen to them, but I can't testify when exactly, all I know is in April 2019 blood is going to splash. Blood is going to splash and the whole country is going to lose a couple of souls unexpectedly that specific cursed day,” the message said.

Kanguatjivi said the first man was taken into custody at Karibib on Tuesday night after his wife, who is a teacher at Otavi, reported him missing earlier this week. According to Kanguatjivi the man, who is an employee at NIMT and is based at Tsumeb, was transferred to Walvis Bay for further questioning by the police.

Thereafter a decision will be taken on whether he will face any charges.

He apparently had a document in his possession that states he is a PLAN war veteran. The suspect is a lecturer at the Tsumeb NIMT campus and lives at the town. Reports indicate he was among the employees retrenched by NIMT and then reinstated.

By yesterday afternoon it could not be confirmed whether the suspect had been arrested and charged.

The suspect has allegedly previously been charged for being in possession of illegal weapons and ammunition.

In 2013 he appeared in the Karibib Magistrate's Court on two separate charges under the Arms and Ammunitions Act when the police discovered a cache of allegedly illegal weapons at a farm located near Karibib.

The firearms were buried near a farmhouse. The police found two pistols, one semi-automatic rifle and nine hunting rifles. The police also discovered a hand grenade and ammunition of various calibres in his vehicle, it is alleged. He was arrested on two separate charges - one of being in possession of illegal and unlicensed firearms, and the other of being in possession of explosives and unauthorised ammunition. The identity of both suspects are known to Namibian Sun, but cannot be revealed before a court appearance.

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