Man abducted, set alight

A man narrowly escaped death after he was doused in petrol and set alight in Ashburton on Sunday.

The 25-year-old Mozambican national is fighting for his life in hospital after being severely burned during an apparent robbery near Wally Hayward Drive around 4 pm.

According to Alexandra Road police station spokesperson Captain Kholeka Mhlongo, the man had petrol poured on him after he was abducted from Durban by four unknown assailants.

Mhlongo said that before losing consciousness, the man told the police that he had been abducted and tied up with a cable.

She said the man claimed the assailants, who were travelling in a blue Toyota Corolla, took him to a secluded area in Ashburton where he was robbed of an undisclosed amount of cash, a cellphone and other belongings.

Mhlongo said the robbers, who were carrying a litre of petrol, threw it at the man and set him alight before fleeing the scene.

Fortunately, the man was apparently able to extinguish himself. ER24 paramedics said they were called to the scene by a passing motorist who also immediately alerted police.

“Upon arrival, paramedics found that the man had sustained serious burns over most of his body, leaving him in a critical condition,” said ER24 spokesperson Russel Meiring.

A paramedic, who asked to remain unnamed, said the man had approximately 80% second and third degree burns on his face, arms, buttocks and legs.

He was treated for his injuries and provided with advanced life support interventions before being transported to the hospital.

Meanwhile, in another incident, three people were arrested after a body of a 60-year-old man was found with a stab wound at Asba farm, also in Ashburton.

Mhlongo said the pensioner’s body was found lying in a dense bush by a passerby.

She said although details surrounding his death were still unclear, it is believed that he was attacked on Saturday night while he was on his way home after watching a soccer match with friends.