Policeman concedes Dewani affection

By admin
12 November 2014

An investigating officer conceded that British businessman Shrien Dewani and his wife Anni were affectionate in footage shown in the Western Cape High Court on Wednesday.

Shrien Dewani's defence team called Captain Paul Hendrikse, the State's 15th witness, back to the stand because they had forgotten to show him the footage and certain phone messages.

Hendrikse led the police's investigation after the couple's shuttle taxi was hijacked in Gugulethu, Cape Town, on November 13, 2010, and Anni was shot dead.

The footage shown in court was of the couple walking back late to the Cape Grace Hotel a night before the incident, hand in hand.

The couple were dressed smartly and laughed together. Dewani wrapped his arm around his wife and nuzzled her neck.

In another video clip, taken at the hotel bar, the couple took photos of each other, got staff to take photos and cuddled in a small booth. Dewani was seen putting his arm around her and kissing her.

Hendrikse confirmed he had seen the footage.

In the dock, tears poured down Dewani's cheeks and he bowed his head at times.

Van Zyl said this affection contrasted with the State's view that he killed his wife while on honeymoon.

Hendrikse acknowledged what the footage seemed to show but added that Dewani never disclosed a phone call to his convicted shuttle taxi driver Zola Tongo that night.

Deputy Judge President Jeanette Traverso asked how that fitted into the question asked of him.

"That these intentions here may seem all nice to us my lady. The investigation proves that there was a phone call between Tongo and Dewani that evening. He never told us about it, he lied about the family, and he never said it in the interview with journalist Nick Parker," the officer replied.

He added that this showed something sinister was afoot.

Dewani is on trial for allegedly plotting with Tongo and others to kill Anni while they were on honeymoon in Cape Town in November 2010.

He has pleaded not guilty to charges including kidnapping, murder and defeating the ends of justice.

He claims the couple were hijacked as Tongo was driving them through Gugulethu in his minibus on Saturday, November 13.

He was released unharmed and Anni was driven away. She was found shot dead in the abandoned minibus in Khayelitsha the next morning.

The State alleges he conspired with others to stage the hijacking in return for R15,000.

He maintains that Tongo helped him organise a surprise helicopter trip for Anni for R15,000.

Tongo is serving an 18-year jail term and Mziwamadoda Qwabe a 25-year jail term.

Xolile Mngeni was serving life in jail for firing the shot that killed Anni, but died in prison from a brain tumour on October 18.

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