Lotter accused felt like a suicide bomber, court hears

2011-11-09 14:22

Nicolette Lotter, who is accused of murdering her parents, was “as motivated as a suicide bomber” and believed in what was expected of her, the Durban High Court heard on Friday.

Pastor Leon van Assenderp testified that she told him this when he counselled her after the murder of her parents, Maria Magdalena “Rickie” and Johannes Petrus “Johnny” Lotter, at their home in Westville on July 19 2008.

He told the court that Nicolette and her two co-accused, her brother Hardus and her then boyfriend Mathew Naidoo, were possessed by supernatural evil forces when he saw them.

The pastor said he believed they were in the early stages of an occultic movement, with Naidoo as the leader. The siblings have claimed that Naidoo convinced them he was the third Son of God and instructed them to kill their parents as God wanted them dead.

Van Assenderp, of the Apostolic Faith Mission, was asked if people could be possessed to such an extent that they knew what they were doing, but not its wrongfulness.

The pastor said there had been many cases where people followed a leader and even committed suicide for him. He said when he first met Nicolette she told him that Naidoo had a very strong spiritual influence over her and that he punished her sexually for being disobedient.

When she told the pastor she was as motivated as a suicide bomber and believed she was doing what was expected of her, he believed she was telling the truth. When the pastor met Naidoo, he was crying so bitterly that normal conversation was not possible.

The pastor then told of certain manifestations that happened when evil forces took hold of people and how these forces could be driven out when ordered to do so by an authority.

When the pastor said he started praying with Naidoo, and that Naidoo fell to the ground with twitching and twirling movements.

He was bound by some evil forces and they refused when told to leave him, the pastor told the court. Sounds came out of Naidoo, but he was crying so much that Van Assenderp could not identify them. The pastor said this was in the realm of the supernatural.

While the Lotter siblings did not fall down as Naidoo had, they displayed similar twists in their faces, neck and shoulders, he said, adding that all three were possessed.

He said that when people were possessed, they believed that whatever they were doing was the right thing to do.
Naidoo told him that he would take the blame for the crime.

When he asked Hardus what had driven him to commit the crime, he scribbled down notes about angels and demons and said he had been taught by Naidoo.

Asked if all three displayed signs of being possessed and if they would have known that they were planning to kill the deceased, he said yes. The pastor said they would not have known that they were wrong.

After telling him that they were motivated like suicide bombers, Nicolette told him Naidoo had planned and organised the murders and that she and her brother accepted that this was what they needed to do.

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