Pensioner's killers delay sentencing

2012-10-26 20:30
Pretoria - A 28-year-old security guard and his friend who murdered an elderly German pensioner managed to delay being sentenced when their advocates suddenly demanded pre-sentencing reports on Friday.

Security guard Amos Mokgabudi and Frans Madiba were convicted on Thursday on charges of murdering 70-year-old Ute Wiing in her townhouse in Equestria in the east of Pretoria two years ago.

They were also convicted of robbing Wiing of her car, computer and other personal items.

Wiing suffocated after being severely assaulted, trussed up and gagged.

Brian Mathebe was found guilty of illegal possession of Wiing's car and a 9mm pistol whose serial number had been filed off. He was caught driving Wiing's car.

Objections

Final argument had already been presented and Judge Bert Bam postponed the trial for sentencing.

Before sentence could be passed Mokgabudi and Madiba's advocates informed the court they had instructions to apply for pre-sentencing reports.

The State objected, arguing that it would not be in the interest of justice to delay the trial.

This was because Wiing's daughter Sandra Hinsche was going back to Germany and it would be extremely detrimental for her to miss the sentencing.

Age

Hinsche had already been at the mercy of the South African justice system for over two-and-a-half years, the court was told.

The State said the accused were not youngsters and had a full opportunity to put their case in mitigation before the court, but chose not to do so.

Bam said he did not know what might come out of the reports, but it might at the end of the day be argued that the accused did not have a fair trial if he refused their request.

He appreciated that the family of the victim might not be impressed, but felt compelled to arrange a postponement, the judge said before postponing the trial to 19 November.

Hinsche appeared upset and angry about the delay and stood staring at the accused until they left court.

- SAPA
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