Pete Mihalik Photo: Noor Slamdien/ANA Pictures
Two men accused of assassinating gangster lawyer Pete Mihalik are being kept at the Sea Point police holding cells because their safety cannot be guaranteed in Pollsmoor Prison.

The Cape Town Magistrate's Court also heard the murder was premeditated and that the suspects, who are from KwaZulu-Natal, were contracted by a syndicate.

“This act was committed by a person, group of persons or syndicate acting in the execution or furtherance of a common purpose or conspiracy,” said State prosecutor Helena Booysen.

Court 16 was packed to the rafters on Thursday as the nervous-looking suspects, Sizwe Biyela, 26, and Nkosinati Khumalo, 31, dressed in jeans and T-shirts, appeared.

They face four charges, which include the murder of Mihalik, the attempted murder of his eight-year-old son, possession of illegal firearm and possession of ammunition, the NPA’s Eric Ntabazalila said.

SUSPECTED: Sizwe Biyela, 26, is on trial at the Cape Town
 Magistrate's Court

Biyela did not have any shoes on, wearing only vuil secret sokkies.

Before proceedings kicked off, the Anti-gang Unit swept the courtroom and people were kept at bay until the court was given the all-clear by heavily armed police officers.

The accused made a brief appearance and were hastily taken back to the court cells.

They were arrested on Tuesday shortly after the murder of Mihalik, 50, who was shot in the head in his black Mercedes-Benz as he dropped his son off at the private school Reddam House in Green Point.

SAFETY ISSUE: Colonel Charl Kinnear

Mihalik’s son was wounded and is recovering at a private hospital.

He has a bullet lodged in his jaw.

Mihalik’s teenage daughter, who was in the backseat, was not injured.

The gunman fired two shots through the driver’s window.

Booysen said the investigating officer, Colonel Charl Kinnear, asked the court to place the two suspects in custody at the Sea Point police cells as there was reason to believe they may “come to harm” if kept at Pollsmoor.

She said one of them had been out on bail for another serious offence.

Magistrate Gregory Jacobs recommended they apply for Legal Aid as the “very serious matter” would in all likelihood be transferred to the high court.

Biyela opted for Legal Aid as he has not been able to call home to ask relatives to get him a lawyer.

Nkosinathi indicated he would hire a private lawyer and the magistrate granted him time to do so.

Both men spoke through an interpreter and the magistrate postponed the case to 8 November.

Video: Kim Kay/Daily Voice

Mihalik, the go-to lawyer for alleged underworld figures, lost his wife, who was suffering from depression to suicide three years ago.

Mihalik’s former partner, Advocate Noorudien Hassan, was shot and killed while seated inside his car in front of his Lansdowne home in November 2016.

A source told the Daily Voice Mihalik had been on a hit list, and received a death threat on Monday, and that his death was linked to an extortion case coming up for trial this month.

Mihalik’s firm was the legal counsel for alleged kingpins Nafiz Modack and Colin Booysen, as well as Ashley Fields and Jacques Cronje, who face six charges including money laundering and extortion linked to the Cape Town nightclub security industry.

A fifth accused, Carl Lakay, 45, was shot and killed in August while sitting in his car in his driveway in Goodwood.

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