Girl denies knowledge of murder plan

2013-04-29 17:59
(Picture: Beeld)

(Picture: Beeld)

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Johannesburg - A teenage girl will deny introducing satanic elements to a ritual based on a Bible verse, a Johannesburg court heard on Monday.

Courtney Daniels knew nothing about murder plans, her lawyer Enrico Guarneri told the South Gauteng High Court sitting in the Palm Ridge Magistrate's Court on the East Rand.

Daniels and three others - Lindon Wagner, Harvey Isha, and Robin Harwood - are accused of setting two girls alight in an apparent satanic ritual.

Kirsty Theologo was 18-years-old when she and her friend were tied up, doused with petrol and set on fire on a koppie, south of Johannesburg, on 21 October 2011.

Theologo died in hospital, while her friend survived.

Guarneri said Daniels, who was a minor at the time, only knew of a ritual where a spiritual being would be summoned. She knew nothing about planning to kill Theologo, he said.

Lester Moody, who admitted to setting the girls alight, testified against the four accused. Moody and Jeremy King entered into a plea bargain with the State in a bid to get a lesser sentence after admitting to the crime. Moody was sentenced to 17 years in jail for his role in the murder, five years of which were suspended.

Guarneri said to Moody on Monday: "You have fabricated your evidence because of this good deal you made with the State."

He said Daniels did not place burning candles in the shape of a pentagram, as the court heard last week.

Instead, he said the court would soon hear how Wagner drew the pentagram and erected the burning candles at each of the five points.

He told Moody he found it strange that his written statement did not correlate with the evidence he was giving in court.

He said it was interesting to note that certain things written in King's statement, which were not mentioned in Moody's statement, were being given as evidence in court.

He asked Moody why in his written statement taken by the police in the presence of his attorney, did he not mention the match-maker game.

Moody previously told the court that he, King and Wagner had played the game which involved toilet paper and matches.

Guarneri went over the events leading up to the ritual with Moody, when he found Moody was contradicting evidence he had given previously.

Too scared

Last week, Moody testified that Wagner had suggested Isha should be blamed for the killing.

Moody had said Wagner suggested this on the Saturday after the ritual, when he and the four accused re-grouped outside Wagner's mother's flat.

On Monday, however, the court heard how Wagner could not have made the suggestion to the group, as he was in the flat at the time.

"You are the one that made the suggestion," said Guarneri. Moody denied this.

Guarneri said when his client first heard Moody speak of sacrificing Theologo she had not taken him seriously as he smoked so much dagga.

He said Daniels did not pour brake-fluid into Theologo and her friend's drinks once the group arrived at the top of the koppie, behind the Linmeyer swimming pool.

He said she was not aware anyone else had intentions of drugging the two girls with brake-fluid. Guarneri said when Theologo took a sip of her drink and complained it tasted strange, his client even suggested to Theologo to add ginger beer to it.

Moody had testified that Daniels had been too scared to cut her hand so she could spill her blood over a burning Bible during the ritual.

He had testified that Daniels offered her hand to Wagner, who cut her palm and squeezed her blood over the Bible.

Guarneri said this was not true as Wagner had forcefully taken his client's hand and cut it.

Guarneri said that before the girls were set alight Wagner throttled Theologo's friend and told the rest of the group she was dead.

Guarneri said Daniels went to the girl, checked her pulse and found she was still alive. She lied to Wagner and agreed the girl was dead so he would leave her alone, the court heard.

Moody said he did not remember that version of events. He said he had no plans of not telling the whole truth as that would create problems for him.

The trial continues on Tuesday.
Read more on:    kirsty theologo  |  lindon wagner  |  robin harwood  |  johannesburg

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