Police Offer $22,000 Reward After Stoning Deaths Near Cape Town

South African police offered a reward of 250,000 rand ($22,000) for information leading to the arrest of the killers of six men found stabbed and stoned near a farm in Kraaifontein, northeast of Cape Town.

Four of the six victims, aged between 18 and 30, have been identified, Police Commissioner Arno Lamoer told reporters in Cape Town today at a televised news conference.

“We do not have any arrests at this stage,” Lamoer said by phone earlier. “The motive for the killings is also unknown.”

A task team has been set up to work on the case. The men were found with their hands tied behind their backs, lying face down by passersby yesterday, according to the South African Press Association. “We will work until we find the culprits,” Lamoer told reporters.

Police in South Africa’s Western Cape province estimate that about 100,000 gang members compete for turf and control of the local drug trade, mostly in areas around Cape Town. The country’s murder rate, almost seven times that of the U.S., increased to 32.2 per 100,000 people in the year through March, when there were 17,068 homicides, according to police data released in September.

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