South Africa Hip-hop Star Found Guilty Of Murder

A court in South Africa on Tuesday found a hip-hop star guilty of murder of four schoolchildren in a drag-race crash that had victims’ families worried that wealth and fame would get the hip-hop star off the crime easy.

Molemo Maarohanye, popularly known as Jub Jub, faced charges of murder and attempted murder stemming from March 8, 2010 drag race in which he and his co-accused drove cars that ploughed into a group of schoolchildren, killing four and seriously injuring two. The crashed happened in Soweto, close to where they would be charged.

According to the magistrate that ruled on the case, the men drove under the influence of drugs, and so found guilty on four counts of murder and on two counts of attempted murder.

“The death of the deceased occured as a result of the driving of those vehicles and as such the accused are convicted of driving their vehicles while under the influence of drugs,” the magistrate said.

Many South Africans worried the hip-hop star and his co-accused, Themba Tshabalala, would not be convicted because of their wealth. Jub Jub is one of the most popular artists in South Africa, and so riots errupted when he was granted bail and the case was postponed because people feared that would be the end of his prosecution.

According to the South African Press Association, after the decision was delivered, families of the victims were overwhelmed with emotions, with one woman losing consciousness and schoolchildren breaking into tears.

The hip-hop star will be sentenced in November.