State argues wife’s hijacking story does not add up

2013-12-03 00:00

THE story given to police by an alleged hijacking victim, Thenjiwe Griffiths (29), who reported her husband missing in 2006, did not add up and created the suspicion that she was involved.

This evidence was given in the Pietermaritzburg high court yesterday by Warrant Officer Musa Ndlela of the Organised Crime Unit, who is a member of the team responsible for arresting and charging Thenjiwe with the murder of her husband, Allan Griffiths (60), on January 20, 2006.

Allan’s body was found lying in long grass alongside a gravel road in the Winterton/Colenso area.

The state alleges that he was killed in a hijacking incident staged by Thenjiwe, after she had siphoned substantial sums of money from his bank accounts.

Ndlela told the court that Thenjiwe was placed under arrest after being interviewed in relation to the alleged hijacking because her answers were contradictory and her story had not satisfied them.

He testified that following her arrest she had directed him and his colleague, Warrant Officer Mebra Nzimande, to the place where they found her dead husband’s body.

He said she had suddenly “made a report” to them while they were en route to take her to the Loop Street police station to detain her.

They immediately turned back along the N3 towards Colenso and took the Winterton off-ramp as directed.

However, when they reached the area it was already dark and they had to return the following morning.

Ndlela said Thenjiwe told them where to stop. They could not see the body from the vehicle and Nzimande alighted and thereafter found the corpse lying in the grass.

The prosecution alleges that Allan — a pensioner and alcoholic — had met the young woman at a club and later married her.

However, he soon decided to divorce her because she was abusive and assaulted him to the extent that he approached a lawyer and obtained a domestic violence interdict against her.

A manager from First National Bank, Vishan Singh, gave evidence yesterday in connection with the various transactions on Allan’s accounts just prior to his death, at which time his account was in overdraft.

Allan’s sister, Carolyn Riddle, testified earlier in the trial to the effect that her brother had feared for his life and called her for help weeks after he married Thenjiwe in April 2005.

Thenjiwe has pleaded not guilty.

According to a statement handed to court, she alleges she and her husband were held up at gunpoint on the day in question.

She claims that one of the ass­ailants tried to rape her, but that she’d seized a chance to flee when a car approached.

The assailants thereafter drove off with her husband.

The case is proceeding.

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