Alleged wife killer Rob Packham denied leave to appeal bail cancellation

2019-02-27 17:29
Robert Packham. (Adrian de Kock, Netwerk24)

Robert Packham. (Adrian de Kock, Netwerk24)

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Rob Packham, who stands accused of killing his wife Gill last year, has lost his application for leave to appeal the Western Cape High Court's decision to cancel his bail.

In her written judgment on Wednesday, Judge Elizabeth Baartman said there was no sound or rational basis to conclude that there were prospects of success on appeal.

She cancelled his bail of R75 000 in December after finding that he had breached his bail conditions by making contact with his ex-mistress and her friend.

READ: Why alleged wife killer Rob Packham feels his bail should not have been cancelled

They may not be named in terms of a court order.

"If one bears in mind that the contravention was committed after a court had found that the applicant had breached the original bail conditions, increased the bail amount and imposed house arrest with stringent conditions, the seriousness of the breach is obvious," said Baartman.

She said Packham's attitude towards the court order defied logic and indicated "his attitude towards it".

"It is not in the interest of justice to allow the applicant to persistently contravene his bail conditions because his intentions are honourable."

Packham's lawyer Ben Mathewson argued earlier this week that the State had never proved that he had actually breached his conditions and had relied on speculation, hearsay and a "haphazard" police investigation.

He said the court should thus never have found that his client had tried to contact a woman he had an affair with for three years, via a friend, using text and a "snail mail" letter.

Packham has denied that he was the author of the communications in question.

Remains in Pollsmoor Prison

The defence argued that cancelling his bail was too heavy-handed, given the type of perceived breach and benevolent tone of the communication.

But Baartman said the witness had complained about being harassed and had sought protection from the State.

"It follows that she was influenced. I do not understand how it can be in the interest of justice to allow an accused to harass a potential witness in his upcoming trial," she said.

"It is the court's duty to protect the rights of both the accused and the witness, to ensure the integrity of the process."

Packham remains in custody in Pollsmoor Prison.

He faces two charges: murder and defeating or obstructing the administration of justice.

His wife disappeared on February 22 last year and her body was later found in the boot of her burnt out car at the Diep River train station in Cape Town.

His trial is expected to start next month.

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Read more on:    rob packham  |  cape town  |  crime  |  court
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