Contradictions in Britts murder trial

2014-12-04 00:00

THE beginning of the Hector Britts murder trial was marred with technical discrepancies as the first witness contradicted herself yesterday.

Britts appeared before magistrate Kariedha Mohamed at the Durban Magistrate’s Court for the alleged murder of patron Craigh Botha at Rocca Bar nightclub in Morningside last year.

It is alleged that on the night of August 3, Britts shot Botha after he allegedly punched him.

It was previously reported that Britts handed himself over to the police shortly after the shooting.

Botha died of multiple organ failure shortly after the incident.

Yesterday the court called the first witness, Joann du Preez, who was at the club that night to testify.

Du Preez told the court that she was on the balcony that night. She said she saw a well-built man wearing a black shirt slide what she thought was a gun into his shirt.

During cross examination, Britts’s attorney Ridwaan Sayed grilled Du Preez about her statement, which was signed in Pretoria.

Du Preez admitted that she gave her statement to the police telephonically on November 26 and it was later brought to her house for her to sign.

During her testimony, Du Preez told the court she did not know that someone had been shot that night and that had found out later on Facebook about it. Magistrate Mohamed pointed out to Du Preez that her testimony was full of contradictions.

Mohamed said Du Preez, in her statement, said she knew that someone had been shot because she discovered while she was downstairs that someone had been shot.

Du Preez admitted that the evidence she gave in court was incorrect and that she stood by her statement.

Sayed filed an application for a postponement because they had not received a crucial statement that was going to be presented by a crucial witness.

Mohamed granted the application and adjourned the matter until February 26 and 27, and March 2 and 3.

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