Mpumalanga man found guilty of brutal hammer attack on wife

2014-04-07 16:54

A man who hit his wife so badly with a hammer that she later chose to be euthanised in the Netherlands has been found guilty of attempted murder.

Edwin Cruywagen, who lived near Hazyview, Mpumalanga, at the time the crime was committed, was today found guilty of attacking his wife Francis, on June 21 2011.

He had pleaded not guilty to the attempted murder charges.

He testified that when he arrived home that night from a drinking spree, he found his wife had been attacked and that he left her in the house to go look for the attackers.

Passing judgment in the Nelspruit Magistrates’ Court, Magistrate Shelly Msibi said evidence from two witnesses indicated the accused had admitted to the crime.

“That night, after the attack, you went to confess to your close friend, Patrick Herbst, saying: ‘I think I have just killed Francis’,” Msibi said.

“In his evidence, the witness said he had no reason to lie as you are friends.”

Msibi said the accused’s security guard, George Mohlala, who worked at the house, also testified that Cruywagen confessed to him, asking him to shoot him dead after what he had done to his wife.

“Mohlala said that night he never left the yard. You were the only person seen entering and leaving your house. He said nobody could enter as there were two vicious dogs inside,” she said.

Msibi said the witness had said he had no reason to lie as he was grateful to Cruywagen for hiring him.

She accepted the witnesses’ evidence.

“Since there is no evidence that anyone entered the house, confessions from Herbst and Mohlala indicate you are the one who assaulted your wife.”

The matter was postponed to May 9 for a pre-sentencing report.

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