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Pierre Basson

Pierre Corneille Faculys Basson, “in all probability, South Africa’s first mass murderer”, was convicted posthumously in Cape Town in 1906 of murder (Marsh 1991: 2). Basson had killed eight or nine people, including his brother Jasper, and in each case Basson was the beneficiary of an insurance claim pay-out. When police closed in on him in 1906 he shot himself in the head. His accomplice, Tobias Louw, was charged with murder but not convicted on the grounds of insufficient evidence. Basson’s mother was also arrested but later released. Schreiner’s letters mention the case several times.

For further information see:
Rob Marsh (1991) Famous South African Crimes Cape Town: Struik Timmons [http://www.africacrime-mystery.co.za/books/fsac/fsac.pdf]
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