The sister of alleged Dixie Boys gang boss Fadwaan “Vet” Murphy passed away suddenly this week in the midst of their Western Cape High Court trial.
The suspected drug kingpin, his sister Glenda Bird as well as Dominic Davidson, his business partner Leon Paulsen and Desmond Jacobs face 229 charges relating to money laundering, dealing in drugs and racketeering, after cops raided a drug factory in Lotus River allegedly belonging to him.
The group are all out on bail.
Thursday, Murphy, 47, from Lentegeur, told the Daily Voice he has already lost five other family members this year.
He says he was close to Glenda, 50, who died at Groote Schuur Hospital on Wednesday, just days after learning she had cancer.
“Since September she has been complaining about pain in her tummy and in the last three weeks she became very ill,” he says.
“Last week she got even worse and after taking her to two hospitals, Netcare in Kuils River revealed after a CT scan that she had pancreatic cancer,” he said.
Doctors told the family it was too late for Bird’s cancer to be treated as it had already spread to her colon.
“We were very close and the only thing that came between us was the court case, as it was ordered she cannot come into Mitchells Plain.
“She moved to Wolseley to live with her cop boyfriend,” Murphy says.
A heartbroken Murphy says Bird is the sixth relative’s he lost this year.
“I lost my cousin’s son, who was like a son to me, my cousin, my uncle, my mother, who died in June, and the man who was like a father to me, Advocate Vernon Jantjies,” he said.
Jantjies, who was representing Bird in their matter, was shot and killed outside his linen shop in Mitchells Plain on 1 December.
Gunmen pumped 13 bullets into his face before fleeing the scene in a car.
Police said no arrests have been made yet and the motive for the murder is being investigated.
Murphy says he does not know who is behind Jantjies’ death or why he was killed, after rumours surfaced the legal eagle was killed because their case was going badly.
“I have known him for 26 years. I called him Pa,” Murphy says.
“Whoever killed my Pa, killed him in an uncivilised manner. I don’t know what the motive could be. I sit every day pondering what could have happened.
“He was a father figure to everyone in my family. He would put me in my place and reprimand me like a father would his son.
“I would do nothing without his confirmation.
“I am devastated at his death. Who’s going to guide and reprimand me now?”
He says shortly before his death, Jantjies had been at his Turksvy Street home.
“The night that he died, he was at my house at about 6.55pm and reminded me that we had court the next day.
“He told me to get up at 7am and not be late.
“I was not on the crime scene. Walking around with (gang) elements is definitely a no-go for me.
“My plan is to leave Cape Town when my case is done and not be part of this cruel world,” he adds.
Murphy and his co-accused return to court on Tuesday.