ET murder trial postponed

2012-04-12 11:19

The trial of two people accused of murdering rightwing leader Eugene Terre’Blanche was postponed until next week by the North West High Court in Ventersdorp.

“The accused will remain in custody,” Judge John Horn said today in postponing the case until Wednesday and Thursday.

The State and the defence closed their cases today.

Kgomotso Tlouane, for Chris Mahlangu, told the court he had explained to his client the consequences of a decision to dismiss an application by the State to allow evidence about his minor co-accused.

“I consulted with my client and my instructions are to close this case,” he said.

Norman Arendse, for the minor, also told the court he had explained the implications of the decision to his client.

“He has elected not to testify. We are also closing the case,” he said.

Earlier, Judge John Horn ruled inadmissible evidence against the teenager contained in a statement Mahlangu made to the investigating officer.

“I rule that it will not be in the interest of justice to allow the admission made against accused two [the minor accused, who may not be named],” Horn said.

Mahlangu and the teenager are charged with beating Terre’Blanche to death in his farmhouse outside Ventersdorp, in North West, on April 3 2010.

Both have pleaded not guilty of murder, housebreaking, and robbery with aggravating circumstances.

Mahlangu has claimed he acted in self-defence. The teenager has denied involvement in the crime.

Opposing the State’s application to admit the incriminating evidence against the youth, Arendse argued that evidence by the investigating officer, Lt-Col Tsietsi Mano, about Mahlangu’s statement was hearsay.

Mano had said that Mahlangu’s statement to him on the night of the murder was in his sworn statement.

Testifying on Tuesday, Mano said that according to the statement, Mahlangu and the youth planned the murder and had planned to castrate Terre’Blanche after killing him.

According to Mano, Mahlangu said he went into a storeroom on the farm and found an iron rod.

He and the teenager then entered Terre’Blanche’s house through a window. They found Terre’Blanche lying on his back on the bed.

Mahlangu hit Terre’Blanche on the forehead, then twice across the face. The teenager took the rod from him and hit Terre’Blanche on the face and chest, Mano testified.
 

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