The alleged mastermind in the murder of Tshegofatso Pule appeared at the Roodepoort Magistrates Court on Monday.
The 32-year-old Ntuthuko Ntokozo Shoba faces charges of murder, conspiracy to commit murder and defeating the ends of justice.
Shoba was arrested when Pule’s killer Mzukayise Malephane confessed to the crime and was sentenced to 20-years in terms of a plea agreement in which he will testify against Shoba.
Pule, who was eight months pregnant, was found, hanging from a tree in Roodepoort last June, and her murder, like so many others, sent shockwaves through the country.
The National Prosecuting Authority said according to the killer, Shoba offered him R70 000 to kill his girlfriend.
Malephane further explained that Shoba had wanted Pule dead as she was pregnant with his child and he did not want his wife to find out.
NPA spokesperson Phindi Mjonondwane said the initial plan, according to Malephane, was to hang Pule from a bridge in Maraisburg and to write a suicide message on her WhatsApp status.
The attempt failed as Pule never pitched up for a job interview at a restaurant next to Goldreef City, where Shoba had arranged for Malephane to pick her up.
Mjonondwane said on 4 June 2020 another plan was set in motion where Malephane picked her while she was visiting Shoba.
He then drove Pule to Noordgesig where he shot her and then went to Durban Deep in Roodepoort where he hung her body from a tree.
He was arrested soon afterwards.
Shoba was remanded in custody and will be back in court on 1 March for a formal bail hearing.