Dewani accused 'wanted to make statement'

2012-09-10 20:08
Xolile Mngeni is seen at the Western Cape High Court. (File, AP)

Xolile Mngeni is seen at the Western Cape High Court. (File, AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Cape Town - A man accused of killing honeymooner Anni Dewani wanted to make a statement to police even though no lawyer was present, the Western Cape High Court heard on Monday.

A video played in court showed Xolile Mngeni being asked questions by Justice of the Peace, Captain Adolf Jonker, in Bellville, Cape Town, on the evening of 16 November 2010.

Mngeni, through an interpreter, told Jonker he was "just a bit scared of the other guy, the one who did this".

When he showed doubt about making an admission, Jonker repeatedly said the recording could be stopped until Mngeni had consulted with a lawyer.


After a lengthy period of deciding what to do, Mngeni told Jonker: "I can give a statement now, [and] then I can take a lawyer when I'm in court as a lawyer [now] is going to delay."

The court was hearing a trial-within-a-trial to determine whether the State could admit into the court record a statement Mngeni made to the police.

The defence objected to the admission of the statement, contending that it was not valid for a number of reasons.

Dewani was shot dead in Gugulethu in an apparent hijacking on 13 November 2010, while on honeymoon with her husband Shrien.

‘Viciously assaulted’

Mngeni has pleaded not guilty to charges of kidnapping, robbery with aggravating circumstances, murder, and illegal possession of a firearm and ammunition.

The State wanted to use the statement, containing "incriminating admissions", during cross-examination later in the trial.

Qalisile Dayimani, for Mngeni, alleged he was viciously assaulted during interrogation preceding the statement.

He also argued that Mngeni's pleas for legal representation were ignored, that he was told what to say by the officers interrogating him, and that the lengthy interrogation put him under pressure to make a statement.

At one point in the video, Mngeni was asked to take off his green shirt and blue jacket so Jonker could see if he had been assaulted.

When Mngeni took off his top, no marks were visible on his chest or arms. There were also no marks visible on his back.

Wasting time

Jonker reminded Mngeni that he could be given protection if he felt threatened. He could also file a complaint with the Independent Police Investigative Directorate.

Dayimani interrupted the playing of the video at times to object to the way in which the interpreter had translated Jonker's statements to Mngeni.

He told Judge Robert Henney that critical information had not been relayed to Mngeni.

The video was replayed for the court interpreter to decide whether the translation was correct. He concluded the gist of what Jonker had said was accurately conveyed to Mngeni at the time.

Dayimani eventually conceded that Mngeni had been accurately informed of his rights.

Henney criticised Dayimani for wasting the court's time.

The trial continues.
Read more on:    anni hindocha  |  xolile mngeni  |  cape town  |  honeymoon hijacking

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X 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
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Partner Content
What all investors should know about index investing

Index-linked investments are growing fast in popularity globally, and are growing in size and complexity too.

Partner Content
How data is changing investments

Technological disruption is rife in many spheres of business and given the quantity of data available, it’s no surprise that the way in which asset managers work is also changing fast.


Does your dog have separation anxiety?

We've got tips, advice and how to help your dog



Fascinating facts about dogs
Perfectly captured cat snapchats!
Out with the old dog, in with the new
Play with your pet when you're not at home
Traffic Alerts
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.