Pillay denies beatings

2012-09-07 00:00

THE bail application for Ravi Pillay (26), who is accused of murdering his wife, saw the state paint a picture of a relationship mired in deceit, violence and intimidation.

Pillay is accused of murdering his wife Laurette at her Veldenvlei flat, Richards Bay, in July.

Heard at the Richards Bay District Court yesterday, investigating officer Innocent Ndwandwe said he had video footage of Pillay attacking Laurette at the Veldenvlei Primary School, where she worked.

“When [Laurette] went to report the assault in February at Richards Bay SAPS, Ravi showed up and threatened her in front of a police officer, who advised her to take a protection order against her husband,” said Ndwandwe.

The court heard that Laurette went to her her pastor for counselling each morning and that Pillay once burnt her clothes. She was also expected to report her every movement to her husband.

Ndwandwe said the relationship between Pillay and Laurette’s 17-year-old son was “sour” because of the abuse against his mother. Pillay denied assaulting his wife.

Ndwandwe said he believed Pillay was the murderer as there were no signs of forced entry into the flat and that he had an eye-witness placing him at the scene the evening before Laurette’s body was found.

With both families present and Pillay’s mother Namagie — who once told The Witness her son was being framed — praying in between sessions, Pillay said he also had a restraining order against his deceased wife. “She once went to my family in Stanger, begged them and said she wants to live with me again,” said Pillay.

He denied the allegations of assault. He said if he was granted bail he was “willing to relocate to Stanger”.

State prosecutor Val Haripasad asked: “If you had a lovely relationship why did you stay separately?” to which he didn’t answer.

Pillay refused to answer numerous questions from the prosecution team after the judge said his comments could be used against him in trial.

Nearing the end of the day-long bail application, Khumalo told all journalists to step out of the court, despite it being open and opposition coming from the prosecution.

Khumalo said he had not been “informed that the media would be present”.

Pillay was granted R5 000 bail and the case was postponed to October 16.

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