Father burnt, mom buried: Man arrested after allegedly confessing to killing parents

A 22-year-old man is to appear in the New Brighton Magistrate's Court for the murder of his parents in Port Elizabeth - crimes he allegedly confessed to, according to police.

Neighbours contacted the police on Tuesday to say that the man's parents, aged 60 and 55, had not been seen for more than a week.

Early on Wednesday, the father's burnt body was found in an open field next to Mti Street.

Their son was arrested later that day after community members from the Govan Mbeki area of KwaDesi handed him over to police who were patrolling the area.

He cannot be named until he has appeared in court.

"By 19:00 last night (Wednesday) the suspect confessed to the murders and led police to the grave where he buried the mother," police spokesperson Captain Andre Beetge said.

Her body was not burnt, he added.

Beetge said residents initially told police that the man was mentally challenged.

"However, detectives have found him alert and responsive during questioning but suspect that he is a drug user," he added.

Beetge said the man would face two charges of murder when he appears in court on Friday "for the senior State prosecutors to decide if further evaluation of the suspect will be required".

Motherwell cluster commander Major General Dawie Rabie has expressed his appreciation towards the community for not taking the law into their own hands.

"The alertness of the community led police to uncover this double murder. The suspect will be brought before court to face the consequences of his actions," Rabie added.