Family still in pain after yet another farm murder. Much loved father, grandfather, farmer and enigeer came from Italy to SA as a young boy of 19, only to be murdered 50 years later.
It’s nearly a month since the popular Heidelberg farmer, Raffaelle Mastrogiuseppe, who was also well-known in the Sedibeng District and Vaal Triangle, was murdered on his farm on October 3, but for his bereaved family, the shock and pain linger on…
The 69-year-old Raffaelle Mastrogiuseppe died in his house in Houtpoort, Heidelberg, on Wednesday, October 3, after being shot during a robbery.
Police spokesperson Capt. Kay Makhubele, told Sedibeng Ster’s sister publication, Heidelberg/Nigel Herautan, that the five suspects broke into his farmhouse in the early hours that morning.
Mr Mastrogiuseppe was ambushed and wounded in the chest. He died at the scene. After the murder, the suspects made off with his car, household items and a safe. Two getaway vehicles were allegedly used.
“A security guard suspected something was wrong when she saw a number of vehicles driving around on the farm property. She later flagged a SAPS patrol vehicle, and after police arrived at the scene, one suspect was arrested. They then discovered the victim’s body inside the house,” Makhubele said.
Two suspects were later arrested in Ratanda, where police confiscated a firearm and the two getaway cars. Some of the stolen items were also recovered in the cars.
Cases of murder, house robbery, and illegal possession of a firearm and stolen goods have been opened and are being investigated.
The suspects appeared in the Heidelberg Magistrate’s court and the case was postponed to a later date for further investigation.
* The late Mr Mastrogiuseppe came from Italy to South Africa as a 19 year old boy, where he in later years became a highly productive member of the local community, creating jobs for many.
Despite State Precident Ceryl Ramaphosa telling the world that there are no farm murders in SA, another farmer was killed in Heidelberg early in October, a stone throw from the Vaal Triangle. Here his family remembers a man that was loved by many.
Read the response of his son, Paolo Mastrogiuseppe:
My father left Italy at age 19 then spent 50 years creating an economy for South Africa, paying tax and feeding millions through working the farmlands and creating industry, now Murdered by 5 cowards on our family farm in Heidelberg . Cyril Rhamaposa you are a disgrace!
Another family member wrote this Facebook message on 4 October.
Paola Mastrogiuseppe Da Mota writes: The reason for sharing this post now while the pain is still raw and my uncle’s body still in a bag is to make the world aware that what is happening in this country is REAL. Farm murders are REAL. The horror stories are REAL. And yesterday we lived this REAL life nightmare as my uncle’s body was removed from his farmhouse in Heidelberg for the last time.
My uncle who worked his whole life trying to make this country a better place and who helped feed the very hands that took away his life. A life that was devoted to helping others, a life that meant so much to us and nothing to the people who took it.
Zio you always deserved better, your humility and heart of gold were not of this world and your death will not be in vain. Our hearts are shattered in a million pieces as it is the hardest thing in the world to accept a death like this, but I want the world to know the truth of what is happening in this country right in front of our eyes. We can no longer deny it as it has hit us right in our hearts this time. Zio may you rest in peace, you were my second father and I will love you forever.
Follow this link to read a full report about what happened on that terrible day: