Hunter shot, friend arrested

BURGERSFORT – Mr Stephan Johannes (Fanie) Fourie (42), a local resident, is under police guard in hospital after Mr Mossie Mostert (53) was shot dead during a hunting trip near Phalaborwa on Saturday.

The bullet that killed Mostert also wounded Mr Christo Koen, another member of the hunting party. Koen claimed it was a freak accident

Mossie and his son Andries Mostert (17) from Hoedspruit, Christo, and his son Mias Koen (10) from Botswana, Mr Kobus Koen (Christo’s brother) from Phalaborwa, and Fourie decided to take a hunting trip to Tintshaba on the Maseke Game Farm in the Mica area.

On Saturday at 18:30 the group of friends went driving in search of bush pigs. According to Lt Col Ronel Otto, Limpopo police spokesman, Christo, a professional hunter, was driving the Toyota Hilux double-cab bakkie.

Mossie was sitting next to him in the passenger seat. Kobus, also a professional hunter, and Andries were seated in the rear of the cab. Fourie and Mias were standing on the load deck of the bakkie.

They told police they were driving slowly on a dirt road when they spotted a drift of bush pigs in front of them. The pigs ran into the veld and they continued to drive on. Fourie aimed at the bush pigs from the load deck of the bakkie with his .308 hunting rifle. He lost his balance and as he stumbled his rifle discharged.

The bullet went through the roof of the bakkie and hit Mossie in the head, and Christo in his left calf. When the Phalaborwa police arrived at the scene, Mossie was declared dead.

Otto said Fourie collapsed at the scene after the incident, apparently experiencing major shock. He was taken to Maphuta L Malatjie Hospital in Phalaborwa by ambulance where he will remain under police custody until he is discharged.

Otto said Fourie will then appear in the Phalaborwa Magistrate’s Court. Christo said it was a freak accident, but still remained a tragic incident. The bullet fragment in his calf was removed on Monday. He said no alcohol had been involved and that Fourie being a diabetic, could not use any.

Fourie was originally from Phalaborwa but more recently resided with his wife at Khumula Game Lodge near Burgersfort. A funeral for Mossie will be held at the NG Church in Phalaborwa today.

Chané van der Merwe

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