Ex-rugby player Zane Kilian charged with murder of cop Charl Kinnear

Mourners have started to gather to pay tribute to Charl Kinnear, an Anti-Gang Unit officer who was killed on Friday.
Mourners have started to gather to pay tribute to Charl Kinnear, an Anti-Gang Unit officer who was killed on Friday.

The identity of the man arrested in connection with the murder of senior Cape Town policeman Charl Kinnear has been revealed. He is Zane Kilian, 39, a former professional rugby player from Gauteng.

Kilian appeared in the Bishop Lavis magistrate's court on Friday morning under heavy police guard. The burly man wore a black hood in court and stared at the magistrate.

Col Charl Kinnear was murdered in a suspected hit in Cape Town on Friday.
Col Charl Kinnear was murdered in a suspected hit in Cape Town on Friday.
Image: SA POLICE SERVICE

He stood in the dock handcuffed, and the only time he spoke was when he confirmed he speaks Afrikaans.

Angry members of the community in Bishop Lavis, where Kinnear was killed a week earlier outside his home, shouted expletives outside court. Some said Kilian must rot in jail for, allegedly, “killing a good cop”.

Kilian faces charges of murder, conspiracy to commit murder and illegal interception of communication.

“The accused is guilty of murder in that upon or about September 18 near 10 Gearing Road, Bishop Lavis, in the district of Goodwood, the accused did unlawfully and intentionally kill Charl Kinnear, a male person,” the charge sheet read.

“The state will allege that the accused contravened the Regulation of Interception of Communications and Provision of Communication-Related Information Act in that the accused from around March 2020 until September 18 2020 within the Republic of South Africa wrongfully, unlawfully and intentionally intercepted communication in the course of its occurrence or transition from the cellphones of Charl Kinnear.”

The court postponed the matter to October 5 for further investigation.

A bail hearing for Kilian will be held at the Bellville police cells.

Eric Ntabazalila, spokesperson for the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) in the Western Cape, said it would oppose Killian's release on bail.

Kilian's attorney, Eric Bryer — who once represented Czech fugitive Radovan Krecjir — said the Springs, Gauteng, man was arrested on Monday and questioned at the Hawks' offices in Germiston.

“They took him to Midrand police station on Monday night. On Tuesday he was in the Midrand cells until about 3pm,” said Bryer. “They collected him and brought him here [to Cape Town] overnight, and we arrived here on Wednesday morning.”

Bryer said Kilian had not yet been charged when he left Gauteng.

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