State under fire in Agliotti trial

2010-10-25 13:09

The state’s handling of the trial of Glenn Agliotti, accused of the murder of businessman Brett Kebble, has again come under fire at the High Court in Johannesburg.

Agliotti’s legal team, led by advocate Lawrence Hodes, said today that Agliotti had been prejudiced by the constant delays in the trial.

This, after the state told the court that its next witness, Roger Kebble (the father of slain mining magnate Brett Kebble), was unable to testify due to a heart condition.

Hodes said that after a nine-week postponement, the state was not ready to proceed. He pointed out that the state also did not provide the defence with a statement from Kebble, a “trend” that “permeated the entire trial”.

“All these arrangements have been made when they don’t even know what he is going to say,” Hodes said.

He added that he was willing to concede to another postponement on condition that the state provide a date when Kebble would be available and on condition that it let the court into its confidence on what evidence he would provide.

Advocate Lethabo Mashiane, part of the prosecution team, told the court that Kebble remained an important witness.

He said allegations were levelled against Kebble during the trial, which he had to answer.

Earlier in the trial, security boss Clinton Nassif testified that Kebble knew that his son Brett was planning an assisted suicide.

Mashiane added that the state did not want to “hold the court to ransom” and would therefore be ready to proceed with the trial.

“The investigating officer can testify ... We are ready to proceed without him [Kebble],” Mashiane told the court.

He added that the state would like Kebble to be examined by state doctors to determine the precise day on which he could testify.

Judge Frans Kgomo adjourned the matter for lunch. The trial resumes at 2pm.

Agliotti is on trial for Brett Kebble’s killing five years ago. He allegedly paid the hit men. He claims it was an “assisted suicide”.

Brett Kebble was shot dead in his car in Melrose, Johannesburg, on the night of September 27 2005.

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