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South African football star shot dead in hijacking


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Former South Africa junior international Luke Fleurs, who played for the country’s most popular club Kaizer Chiefs, has been killed in an attempted hijacking in Johannesburg, police officials confirmed on Thursday.

The 24-year-old was shot in the chest at a petrol station on Wednesday night and the assailants drove off in his vehicle.

“While waiting to be served by the petrol attendant, he was confronted by two armed males,” police spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Mavela Masondo told reporters, adding no arrests had yet been made.

Centre back Fleurs played every minute for South Africa at the Tokyo Olympic Games in 2021 and that same year was called up to the senior team for World Cup qualifiers against Ethiopia, though he did not make it off the bench and remained uncapped.

“We woke up to the heartbreaking and devastating news of the passing of this young life,” South African Football Association president Danny Jordaan said in a statement. “This is such a huge loss for his family, friends, his teammates and football in general. We are all grieving this young man’s passing

South Africa’s Minister of Sport, Arts & Culture, Zizi Kodwa said he was “saddened that yet another life has been cut short due to violent crime”.

Fleurs joined Chiefs from SuperSport United in October, having come through the Ubuntu Football Academy in Cape Town.

He is the latest among thousands of people who are victims of fatal hijackings in South Africa, which has one of the highest murder rates in the world. The latest official crime statistics from October-December last year showed 5,973 hijacking cases reported. 

Story by Nick Said: The Independent: 

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