Justice system ‘fails’ Anni Dewani’s family

2014-12-08 16:20

The family of slain honeymooner Anni Dewani said the justice system had failed them after the Western Cape High Court discharged her husband Shrien Dewani of her murder.

“We came here looking for answers, we came here looking for the truth and all we got was more questions,” said her sister Ami Denborg, speaking on behalf of the Hindocha family today.

“All we wanted was to hear all the events and the hope of actually finding that out has kept us as a family going.”

She said this right had now been taken away from them.

She was speaking outside the court after the British businessman succeeded in an application for his discharge.

He brought the application at the close of the State’s case and neither he nor any defence witnesses took the stand.

“There is no evidence on which a reasonable man can convict the accused,” Western Cape Deputy Judge President Jeanette Traverso ruled.

Denborg said the family was sad Dewani had not given them the full story about his lifestyle and about what happened while they were in the country on honeymoon.

“We just wish Shrien had been honest with us and especially Anni,” she said.

“The knowledge of not ever knowing what happened to my dearest little sister on 13 November 2010; that is going to haunt me, my family, my brother, my parents, for the rest of our lives.”

She thanked the public and others who had offered their support and said she hoped no other family would ever have to go through what they had been through.

“We, as a family, will make no further comments and we respectfully ask the media to give us some time and space for a reflection.”

Anni’s parents and brother shed tears as they spoke to the media and were comforted by a number of supporters standing around them.

Traverso said she took note of the strong public opinion and had heard the plight of the Hindocha family.

She said it was regrettable that many unanswered questions remained about what happened the night Anni was killed, but she could not be swayed by public opinion.

“If any court allowed public opinion or emotion to influence the application of the law, it would lead to anarchy,” she said.

The only possible reason to have refused Dewani’s application was for the hope that he would implicate himself during evidence, which Traverso said would be an injustice.

Dewani walked out of the dock and down the stairs to the holding cell without any expression on his face.

His family burst into tears at the news.

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