Former SA Rugby player Zane Killian, was the first person to appear in court in connection with the murder of top cop Charl Kinnear. Killian appeared in court on Friday and was remanded in custody until his next appearance. Killian, 39, appeared in the the Bishop Lavis Magistrate’s Court just before 10:00 on Friday 25 September 2020. Killian played in the position of hooker for the Falcons and Griquas. The powerfully built Zane wore a dark hoody and was handcuffed when he arrived at court. Several police guards armed with automatic assault rifles surrounded the suspect. Killian is facing three charges – murder, conspiracy to murder and illegal interception of communications. The charge of illegal interception is believed to be linked to the tracking of Kinnear’s phone.
Advocates Blaine Lazarus and Greg Wolmarans represented the National Prosecuting Authority in court and negotiated with the defence team regarding the next steps, which was formally endorsed by the court. Killian will be detained at the Belville police cells until 5 October 2020 when he will make his next appearance. Eric Bryer, the defence attorney, told News24 that he hoped a date could be set then for Killian’s bail application. Major General Andre Lincoln, Kinnear’s ranking officer in the Anti-Gang Unit was also present in court.
A community memorial for Kinnear was held on Thursday. Provincial head of investigations, Major General Jeremy Vearey attended the memorial and said: “No retreat. No surrender. We will rage, till the last drop of blood.” Major General Vearey was one of late President Mandela’s bodyguards. He later posted his message on Facebook. It is believed that the accused’s father is a retired police officer who worked in Gauteng for many years. Killian’s mother, Heila, was killed in a farm attack in April 2018, when she was gunned down by five gunmen. Heila and her sister, Brenda Thomas, were having a braai with two friends.