Accused prosecutor wants plea bargain

2012-10-08 21:42
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Pretoria - A Pretoria prosecutor accused of murdering his Zimbabwean mistress wants to arrange a plea bargain with the State, the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria heard on Monday.

The 31-year-old Geoffrey Mpho Maponya appeared in court on a charge of murder.

Maponya, a married man, was arrested after dustbin collectors discovered the body of his Zimbabwean girlfriend Precious Sebanda, 20, in a dustbin in Church Street, Pretoria, in April last year.

The body was wrapped in pink material. She was naked, had a plastic bag over her head and had apparently died of suffocation.

The State alleged that Maponya took Sebanda to his flat on the morning of 13 April last year, and assaulted her.

He allegedly placed her body in a dustbin, and pushed it outside the next morning, leaving it with other dustbins for collection.

After initially insisting on representing himself, Maponya told the court he wanted a legal aid lawyer.

Judge Bert Bam had refused his application to force the State to provide him with further details on the charges.

The information he demanded included the statements of witnesses who had seen an argument between his wife and Sebanda, whom he described as his ex-girlfriend.

He also wanted a video recording, fingerprints lifted from the crime scene and "blood analysis".

Maponya said he did not want to reveal to the court why he wanted fingerprints lifted from his own flat, but said he had not lived there alone.

The State said it had no knowledge or statements of the alleged argument between Sebanda and someone else. It had only photographs of the crime scene and no blood analysis, as none had been analysed.

Bam said it appeared as if Maponya was trying to delay the trial for some unknown reason and warned him that he was not going to allow any further delays.

He said Maponya had had the opportunity to seek legal aid since February.

Maponya denied trying to delay the trail. He said he had "changed his mind" and now wanted to discuss a plea bargain with the State.

Prosecutor Christo Roberts said it was the first time he had heard of any offer to enter into a plea bargain-agreement.

He said he would first have to hear what Maponya and his legal representative put on the table before a decision could be made.

Bam postponed the trial to Tuesday afternoon.

Read more on:    geoffrey maponya

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