A friend of Henri van Breda's late mother Teresa is angry that he murdered her friend, but still feels some motherly empathy for the "loner", News24 sister publication Netwerk24 reported on Tuesday.
"Even though I was right that he was guilty, today as a mother, I have empathy for Henri," said Ansie Buissinne, who had known the family for about 20 years.
"But I still have anger in my heart that he took Teresa and them away from us."
Buissinne said her children were around the same age as the Van Breda children - Rudi, Marli and Henri - but she had noticed that Henri was always a bit of a loner.
"They [Buissinne's children] were crazy over Rudi and could not get enough of Marli, but funnily enough, Henri, and my child of the same age, never played together."
Buissinne was speaking after Judge Siraj Desai found Van Breda guilty of murdering his mother Teresa, father Martin and brother Rudi, at De Zalze estate outside Stellenbosch in 2015.
He was also found guilty of the attempted murder of his sister Marli and of defeating the ends of justice. He had pleaded not guilty, claiming that intruders were behind the axe murders.
Buissinne claimed that, about a year before the tragedy, Rudi told her that he was worried about his brother using drugs.
Stefan van der Westhuizen, a friend of the family, started crying and left the court after Desai found Van Breda guilty.
Leaning with one hand against a wall outside the Western Cape High Court to compose himself, he said he had just wanted to be there for Henri and Marli, but was feeling very emotional.
Van Breda's female companion Danielle Janse van Rensburg left the court in tears.
Van Breda will stay in the Pollsmoor hospital wing until his sentencing in June.Danielle Janse van Rensburg leaves the Western Cape High Court in tears. (Jaco Marais) Police handcuffs and leads Henri van Breda to the holding cells in the Western Cape High Court after he was found guilty of murdering his parents and brother. (Jaco Marais, Netwerk24)