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New video of S.African man shoved into coffin

Johannesburg, South Africa | AFP |  A new video of a black South African labourer being forced into a coffin was presented in court Thursday at the trial of two white farmers accused of the attack.

The two-minute clip showed the alleged assailants shoving Victor Mlotshwa into the wooden coffin and pressing the lid down with their boots as he begged for his life.

Willem Oosthuizen and Theo Jackson have pleaded not guilty to kidnap, assault and attempted murder over the incident last year in the eastern province of Mpumalanga.

The new phone footage revealed further details about the assault after a shorter clip emerged several months ago, triggering national outrage and leading to the arrest of the two accused.

Both clips appear to have been filmed by the assailants.

“Please don’t kill me,” Mlotshwa begged the men while in the coffin, according to the Times Live website.

“Why shouldn’t we, when you are killing our farm?” one replied.

The two accused told the court on Monday that they had caught Mlotshwa with stolen goods on private property and wanted to scare him.

The new footage caused shock in the court, with many in the public gallery in tears.

Activists from political parties, including the ruling African National Congress and the main opposition Democratic Alliance, have rallied outside court and attended each day of the trial.

On Wednesday, Mlotshwa broke down in tears during his evidence and residents hurled abuse at the accused.

South Africa is beset by deep-rooted racial inequality 23 years after the end of white-minority rule. Cases of racism have erupted regularly on social media in recent years.

 

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