State set to close Henning case

2013-07-01 21:18
Ambrose Monye and Andre Gouws in court. (Werner Beukes, Sapa)

Ambrose Monye and Andre Gouws in court. (Werner Beukes, Sapa)

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Pretoria - The State expects to close its case on Tuesday in the Chanelle Henning murder trial, the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria has heard.

The State would call only two more witnesses, Prosecutor Gerrie Nel told the court on Monday.

In other proceedings on Monday, Daan Mostert, for Andre Gouws, asked Captain Heinrich Viljoen about the details of his client's arrest.

He was taken into custody days after Henning, 26, died in a drive-by shooting in Faerie Glen on 8 November 2011, shortly after dropping off her child at a crèche.

Gouws and his co-accused, former Nigerian athlete Ambrose Monye, have pleaded not guilty to five charges relating to an alleged conspiracy to murder Henning.

Mostert asked Viljoen why Gouws was assaulted by the police.

"He was never assaulted during the arrest," Viljoen testified.

He said the police had used necessary force, as they had been told Gouws could be armed and dangerous.

"So the necessary force was used to ensure the safety of my people and the accused at that stage," Viljoen told the court.

Mostert asked why limitations were placed on who Gouws and his then partner Estelle Hepburn could call when his house was searched.

Viljoen replied that while at the house, Gouws had told Hepburn: "Tell Nico I won't talk".

He had told her she was not allowed to phone Henning's estranged husband Nico Henning, but she was allowed to phone a lawyer.

He denied threatening Hepburn with arrest if she phoned anyone.

"My lord that is absolute nonsense. What would the charges be?"

Voice stress test

Matthew Klein, for Monye, asked Viljoen to clarify a statement he made earlier about a voice stress analysis test done on Nico Henning the day after his wife's murder.

Viljoen testified that when Nico Henning asked him how it went, he replied that it had not gone too badly.

He said Henning smiled when he told his sister he had passed the test.

Klein asked Viljoen to clarify whether Henning actually passed the voice stress analysis test and whether he had the official result.

"Yes, there was an official result," Viljoen told the court, but said the information formed part of an ongoing investigation.

He said he was not sure whether he could give the court the information.

Klein asked if the results of such a test were important.

Viljoen said the test was an investigative tool, and was used to determine a person's involvement in a crime.

CCTV footage

Earlier on Monday, the court heard that closed-circuit television (CCTV) footage of Chanelle Henning the day before her murder was authentic.

"No, I did not change [the footage] at all," testified Faerie Glen resident Francois le Roux.

He told the court he had helped residents of Nevada Street, in Faerie Glen, the area where Henning lived, acquire and monitor a CCTV system.

Le Roux said he heard through the media that Henning had been followed before her murder, and he decided to review the CCTV footage.

"On the footage of Monday 7 [November 2011] you see a person on a dark motorcycle coming from Manitoba Street," he said.

Le Roux said a white Hyundai, the same car Henning drove, left a complex in Nevada Street and headed towards a nearby crèche.

"The motorcycle followed the vehicle to the crèche."

He said he had thought it was important information, and the footage was handed to police on Sunday, 12 November.

On Monday, Henning's parents were in court, as was Gouws's mother, Lenie, who spoke to him and hugged him before proceedings started.

Former policeman Gerhardus du Plessis and Willem "Pike" Pieterse are serving 18-year prison terms after confessing to their roles in the murder.

The trial continues.

- SAPA
Read more on:    nico henning  |  ambrose monye  |  andre gouws  |  chanelle henning
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