Drama outside court at appearance of woman accused of arranging hit on husband

2016-12-02 16:42
Petina Coetzee gets into a car before it speeds away. (Jenna Etheridge, News24)

Petina Coetzee gets into a car before it speeds away. (Jenna Etheridge, News24)

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Cape Town – A new hairstyle, drama and clandestine plotting were the highlights of the court appearance on Friday of a Cape Town woman accused of organising a hit on her husband.

At first there was calm in Courtroom 4 of the Wynberg Magistrate's Court when Petina Coetzee, 44, entered the dock.

She strolled in with newly-dyed chocolate brown hair, red lipstick and matching nails, looking a lot more refreshed than she did before being granted R30 000 bail in October.

Her husband Austin, 66, dressed in a grey suit, watched her from the front bench. He later exited the court, cigarette in hand, with his lawyer.

Coetzee was arrested in a police sting two months ago after she allegedly tried to arrange her husband's murder.

She was arrested in the parking lot at the Lansdowne railway station, following information received by Manenberg police.

Another postponement expected

She has been charged with conspiracy to commit murder.

Puckering her rouge lips in apparent discontent, she approached police officers in court when she spotted a journalist taking authorised photos of her.

The court heard a postponement was needed because the defence wanted to procure a psychological report for her.

At her next appearance on January 17, the matter was likely to be postponed for a pre-trial in the Western Cape High Court.

Things got heated outside court when her relatives, said to be her sister and sister-in-law, made an attempt to get her away from the media.

A white SUV idled at the gate while the two walked back into the building and emerged with Coetzee, wearing a black wig and sunglasses. 

She was wearing the same black and white suit she wore minutes earlier.

The sisters walked in front of her, shielding her, with their hands thrown up.

As they got to the News24 and Netwerk24 journalists, they shoved them backwards and shouted at them not to take photos.

Austin Coetzee, 66, and a relative of his wife Petina walks out the Wynberg Magistrate's Court. Petina is accused of organising a hit on him (Jenna Etheridge, News24)

Investigation almost complete

The relatives were warned to stop their actions because it was a public space and the media were entitled to do their job. 

The two shouted verbal threats and religious condemnations before getting into the vehicle and speeding off.

State prosecutor Christiaan de Jongh had told the court that the investigation was almost complete. Cellphone extractions still needed to be downloaded.

Coetzee's bail conditions were relaxed after defence lawyer Edward Mccallum applied to the court. 

She would now appear at Elsies River police station once a week, rather than every day. She planned to live with her brother.

De Jongh wanted the court to remind Coetzee not to make direct or indirect contact with certain individuals.

He intimated that this indirect communication included passing messages on through other people.

"If bail conditions are broken, the State should do something about it," Magistrate Goolam Bawa replied.

Read more on:    cape town  |  crime

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