State: No proof of destroyed evidence

2012-01-26 16:36

Johannesburg - There was no proof that evidence was destroyed which convicted murderer Donovan Moodley claimed would have exonerated him, the South Gauteng High Court heard on Thursday.

"He makes the sweeping statement that everything he needs was destroyed by (former investigating officer Piet) Byleveld," prosecutor Zaais van Zyl said.

"There is absolutely no proof that it ever existed."

Moodley was found guilty in 2005 of the murder and kidnapping of Bond University student Leigh Matthews and the extortion of her father. Moodley was sentenced to life imprisonment for murder, 15 years for kidnapping, and 10 years for extortion.

‘Crushed by weight of the State’

In his application for a retrial, Moodley argued Byleveld tortured him during his interrogation and abused his power to ensure his conviction and lengthy prison sentence.

"I was a young defenceless man who was crushed by the weight of the State," Moodley said.
The statement he gave when pleading guilty in the trial was not corroborated by police investigation, he said.

"The public have been led to believe that something has been investigated that never was."

Moodley said his home, including cupboards and two deep freezers, where a body could have been hidden, were never searched or forensically tested.

Moodley began his application for a retrial on Wednesday. He has chosen to represent himself.

‘Do you plead guilty of your own free will?’

Van Zyl argued that Moodley was afforded the opportunity to tell the court if he had been coerced into making the confession in the original trial.

"He was asked, have you read the statement? Do you understand the statement?... Do you plead guilty of your own free will?" he said, quoting from the 2005 transcript.

Van Zyl said Moodley then had the chance to tell his version of the truth, if he had been forced to lie.

In Moodley's rebuttal of Van Zyl's arguments, he said the State's only answer to his arguments on Wednesday was that they were improbable.

"There are many improbable stories out there in the world that are true."

Moodley said he wished he could get a clip of an Oprah Winfrey show he once watched about innocent people who pleaded guilty.

"History is replete with innocent men being burnt at the stake... I saw an entire Oprah show about similar cases," he said.

Byleveld had told the media repeatedly that more arrests were expected in the case.

"No one in this court believes this case has been solved," Moodley said.

‘Media circus’

His argument rests on his claim that three Nigerian drug dealers - Frank, Allie and Jemba - kidnapped Matthews and murdered her. Moodley said Byleveld forced him to say he had done it alone because he could not lead police to the three.

He directed a comment at Matthews' mother in court for a statement she had made to the media.
"Mrs Matthews, I never claimed to be Jesus."

Judge Joop Labuschagne interjected: "That is irrelevant to your case".

Van Zyl also objected on the grounds that Moodley was using the court as a "media circus".

"This is a gross abuse of these proceedings," he said.

  • Bokfan - 2012-01-26 16:46

    Geez this little parasite is a prime candidate for some kasi style street justice. The toll this farce must be taking on the already wounded Matthews family is deplorable and should never have been allowed. If only there was some way to make this evil creature pay in kind for his crimes I'd give big to reward those who made it happen.

      nasheenar - 2012-01-26 16:51

      Take him round the back of the building and shoot him in the head finish klaar.Leigh didnt have a chance to appeal and appeal and appeal again. He forgets who is the victim here. Kill the b.....d.

      Wesley - 2012-01-26 17:28

      From the pictures in the media, looks like if he have a slow puncher

      Shoosh - 2012-01-26 17:57

      Now if we still had the death penalty for vermin like this then the State could have been spared a lot of wasted court time & revenue.

      Carol - 2012-01-26 18:33

      He needs to be placed in GENERAL Prison facility - inmates will take good care of him ......... b&st&rd !!!!

  • Shirley - 2012-01-26 16:48

    Oh come on-this is just feeding this phsycopaths need for selfimportance! How much more money are they going to waste on this"thing". He should of been sentenced to death! Stop the torture of Leighs family,he could carry on with these lies till he is 100 years old! Enough already!

  • Zoolie - 2012-01-26 16:49

    he`s been watching to much TV in jail. Take away all the TV`s, it shouldnt be a holiday.

  • chantelebrown - 2012-01-26 16:53

    He's just a sick jail bird that wants attention.

      Warmonger - 2012-01-27 08:11

      Indeed, now that he has nothing but time he can spend hours thinking up his drivel, I mean a 300+ page document and the crap that he spewed in the Court; mind-boggeling!!! Judge should have told him (-after the 5'th page) to Foxtrot Oscar!

  • Kala - 2012-01-26 16:59

    Not even the schaiks are gonna get you out. You have another 20 years or so to think of a better story. But don't bother telling me because I don't care.

  • Wesley - 2012-01-26 17:27

    Why must he get another day in court. Well he confess and he was sentenced

  • brendon.lieberz - 2012-01-26 17:44

    the headline for the article is awesome!!

  • lisa.evansdominick - 2012-01-26 17:47

    Stop giving him media coverage, he loves it, he thinks he is some kind of hero or celeb. media blackout should be called for... let the Matthews family grieve in peace and try to find closure.... Donovan Moodley should rot in hell

  • Amien - 2012-01-26 18:09

    nasheenar i agree did she have half achance to plead? NO so let it be quick and easy for him coz its all him him and him

  • snylo - 2012-01-26 18:27

    "I was a young defenseless man..." , gosh! The audacity!! Was Leigh not a young defenseless woman??? Who he chose to KILL??? What a waste of State time and money!!

  • Carol - 2012-01-26 18:28

    Moodley - took you 7 YEARS to think up this STORY ??? You are letting the side down on all your LYING kinfolk - you b&st&rd ! Been watching Oprah on TV, he says ........... obviously fabricated a story from her pathetic show which provokes this type of NUTCASE - good thing her programme is NO MORE !!!!!!!!!!

  • dave.j.colquhoun - 2012-01-27 07:47

    I see that "history is replete with innocent men being burned at the stake". Now theres a thought for you. I've goth the stake and the petrol has anyone out there got a Bic? If he has this overwhelming need for publicity then we could show his executionon Oprah and then get together to talk about how bad we felt watching it. Give it up you parasite!!!!!

  • Christo - 2012-01-29 10:32

    You forgot,there were five, the other two accomplices, Timon and Pumba,are still roaming freely.

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