Darren Fresco’s Twitter admission ‘not necessarily a set-back’

2014-03-11 16:27

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State witness Darren Fresco today admitted that he had followed parts of the Oscar Pistorius murder trial on Twitter and in the media.

“It doesn’t matter where you look, where you turn, where you go ... (the trial) is everywhere”, said Fresco.

He was being cross-examined by Advocate Barry Roux about the incident during which Pistorius allegedly discharged Fresco’s gun at Tashas restaurant in Melrose Arch, Joburg.

Roux asked about evidence given by Kevin Lerena, who was also present, that Fresco was wearing tracksuit pants on the day in question.

“I saw that,” said Fresco, following which he admitted that he had followed “bits and pieces” of the trial on Twitter and other media.

Witnesses in a criminal trial are warned not to discuss their evidence with any other witnesses.

A legal source familiar with criminal trials told City Press that this admission by Fresco was not necessarily a set-back.

“(State prosecutor Gerrie) Nel will likely argue that it shows he was willing to correct (Lerena’s) testimony and admit that he had followed the trial.

“It taints his testimony but it could actually add to the weight of it.”

It remains to be seen, however, how much weight is attached to the rest of Fresco’s testimony.

Roux has pointed out that Fresco’s testimony in court – that he had made up a story in response to Pistorius asking him to take the blame – was not in his original statement.

Fresco has also frequently claimed not to remember details of events he testified about when requested by Roux to do so.

He also could not say why he had testified in court about events that were not in his statement.

Fresco’s testimony today also provided another insight into the high life of Oscar Pistorius.

Roux put it to Fresco that, prior to the incident in which Pistorius allegedly discharged a firearm through the roof of a car, they had been speeding 260km/h in an unlicensed car.

They were pulled over twice and were also allegedly pursued by metro police, according to Fresco.

It was put to Fresco that he crumpled up the first speeding fine he got and threw it on the passenger seat.

The cross-examination will continue tomorrow.

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