Chanelle suspect 'unlucky or very wicked'

2012-02-16 22:47
Pretoria - A man accused of being the mastermind behind the slaying of a young Pretoria mother was either the "most unluckiest [sic] person" or "inherently wicked", the Pretoria Magistrate's Court heard on Thursday.

Prosecutor Gerrie Nel told the court that Andre Gouws had tried to present himself as victim of coincidence.

But in his closing argument, Nel pointed out that the number of coincidences placing Gouws in the conspiracy that led to "the cold-blooded assassination of a 26-year old mother on her way to work" were simply too many to be believable.

During the bail hearing the court heard that cellphone records placed Gouws near Chanelle Henning's residence a number of times prior to her murder. CCTV footage at the same time showed on three occasions a Ford Bantam bakkie and a blue motorcycle similar to those owned by Gouws.

Nel said it was bizarre that cellphone billing records placed Gouws at the same pizza parlour on the same day and same time where Gerard du Plessis and Willem Pieterse claimed to have met him.

Silence is deafening

"If this was coincidence, then this applicant is the most unluckiest person," said Nel.

He pointed out that the State did not have to prove anything. The onus was on Gouws to prove there were exceptional circumstances for the court to release him on bail.

He said Gouws' "silence" in explaining away evidence placing him at key locations in the conspiracy to kill Henning "was deafening".

Du Plessis and Pieterse were earlier this year sentenced to 18 years’ imprisonment each following a plea bargain agreement where they admitted their roles in the murder.

Nel pointed out that out of all those accused in the case, Gouws was the only one to know Henning's estranged husband Nico.

"The question remains: Who contracted Gouws?"


Gouws' dire financial situation - his house had recently been repossessed by the bank - would give him motive to accept a contract to kill Henning.

If there was no one who contracted Gouws to carry out the killing then "we are dealing with an intrinsically bad and or inherently wicked person".

Nel argued there was a number of incidents from ex-wives and business partners proving that Gouws was willing to act beyond the law and should therefore not be granted bail.

Gouws' lawyer Anel Jacobs argued that the case against her client was based on police speculation and dishonest witnesses.

She said the State's case was based on "two co-accused [Du Plessis and Pieterse] who are dishonest, corrupt murderers who could not stand the test of credibility".

She said they were self-confessed drug and alcohol addicts - a point Nel accepted in his argument, saying that "you just don't get a church minister to commit murder".

Jacobs said investigating officer Captain Petrus van der Spuy had made "loose unsubstantiated statements" and "vague allegations to make the applicant [Gouws] look suspicious".

Threatened in jail

She accepted that she needed to prove exceptional circumstances for her client to obtain bail. One such circumstance was the weakness of the State's case.

Jacobs said her client was not a flight risk and could have fled immediately after November 8, when Henning was gunned down after dropping her son off at a crèche.

She said police had failed to prove that the Ford Bantam bakkie and a blue motorcycle, seen on CCTV footage outside Henning's home in the days prior to her murder, belonged to Gouws.

She said the police's attempt to deny Gouws bail was to get him to opt for a plea agreement.

Her client had been threatened by fellow-inmates as well as prison officials. He had, in fact, been assaulted.

Earlier, Gouws' two co-accused, Ambrose Monye and Preshan Singh, appeared in court. They were ordered to appear in court again on March 29.

Singh, who allegedly provided the gun to Pieterse that Du Plessis used to commit the murder, is out on R5 000 bail. Monye is in police custody.

Magistrate Kiro Pillay will deliver her decision on whether Gouws will be granted bail on March 2.
Read more on:    andre gouws  |  chanelle henning

Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Inside News24


6 life hacks you simply have to know

A few simple tricks can make your life so much easier!


For chic geeks...

Device lets disabled people talk through their nose
It’s THIS easy for someone to steal your ATM pin!
This is why you should install iOS 8
17 photo illusions that look so real

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Jobs in Western Cape region

Graphic Designer - Packaging

Cape Winelands
Cozens Recruitment Group ( Western Cape)
R15 000 - R18 000 Per Month

Senior Accounts Clerk

Express Employment Services - Cape Town
R87 - R115 Per Hour

Web Designer

Western Cape
Datafin Recruitment

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now! - shop online today

Pre-order your iPhone 6 at

Hurry and pre-order your own iPhone 6 now at SA’s favourite online store!

Bargain box – 60% off

Reduced prices, very limited stock. While stocks last. Hurry and shop now!

Mind blow low prices on electronics

Get either the Prestigio multiphone or Proline tablet 7” tablet for only R699. Offers valid while stocks last. Shop now!

30% off Barbie toys

Save 30% on all Barbie toys and accessories. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Baby extravanganza month at

Celebrate baby month with a wide range of awesome baby products. Offers valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25


It may feel like you are treading water and going nowhere fast. You may want to get off the merry go round. By pushing more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.