Pilot’s inquest delay queried

2008-04-05 00:00

The past four years have been a painful journey for Brigette Delport, seeking justice for the killing of her partner, James Taylor.

A leading micro-light pilot, Taylor was allegedly shot and killed by policemen at Tongaat Police Station in September 2004. He had gone there to report being assaulted by a gang of men outside a restaurant in La Mercy.

The Independent Complaints Directorate launched an investigation into the shooting, but Taylor’s family has conducted its own probe after receiving conflicting reports about the circumstances surrounding his death.

This week, the inquest into Taylor’s death resumed at the Verulam Magistrate’s Court and re-opened painful memories for his family.

Delport told Weekend Witness she prays that the law will hold his killers to account.

She alleged that vital evidence has gone unaccountably missing in the past three-and-a-half years and that the docket has had to be reconstructed, dragging out the inquest and causing anguish for the family.

"I cannot count how many times we have been subpoenaed to court, only to find out that critical parts of the evidence are not available," she said.

"The time it has taken to bring this case to an end has affected our lives dramatically."

Only when the case is concluded, she said, "can we put James to rest".

Taylor’s father, Dr Maxwell Taylor, called the investigation by the Independent Complaints Directorate "inefficient and incompetent". He said: "It has been a harrowing experience".

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