Mark Minnie's suicide 'too much of a coincidence' - alleged Bird Island victim fears for his life

Mr X, one of the alleged victims of an apartheid-era paedophile ring, which allegedly included government ministers, is living in fear for his life, News24 sister publication Netwerk24 reported on Friday.

Mr X came forward and spoke to the publication last week following the publication of the controversial book The Lost Boys of Bird Island, co-written by Mark Minnie and Chris Steyn.

Minnie, 58, was found dead near Port Elizabeth on Tuesday in what appears at face value to be a suicide.

His family had employed top forensic scientist Dr David Klatzow to investigate his death, Netwerk24 also reported.

READ: Mark Minnie said he would reveal more – publishing house

News24 previously reported that the book detailed how three former National Party ministers, including one who is still alive, were allegedly central figures in a paedophilia ring that operated during apartheid.

Since then, Mr X has been living in fear, telling Netwerk24 that he was going to erase all his traces on social media and change his cellphone number.

Mr X told Netwerk24 he did not believe Minnie’s death was a suicide, saying that would be "too much of a coincidence".  

Mr X during an exclusive interview with Netwerk24.

The Lost Boys of Bird Island alleges that former defence minister Magnus Malan, along with two other apartheid ministers and a local businessman, abused children on Bird Island, just off Port Elizabeth.

News24 reported on Tuesday that the book’s authors had been living in fear for their lives since the book's release two weeks ago.

READ: My 8 hours with Mark Minnie, 3 days before his death

According to well-placed sources, Minnie and Steyn had been receiving threats and there had been anonymous enquiries into their whereabouts.

Both Minnie and Steyn had been investigating several leads that have cropped up since the book was launched, but had been careful not to publicise what they had since unearthed.

Many of Malan's contemporaries, including colleagues and a former newspaper editor, have criticised the book and have rejected allegations that Malan was involved in sexual abuse.

KEEP UPDATED on the latest news by subscribing to our FREE newsletter.

- FOLLOW News24 on Twitter