Jayde Panayiotou: Latest suspect makes brief appearance

2016-07-19 10:52
Jayde Panayiotou. (Facebook)

Jayde Panayiotou. (Facebook)

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Port Elizabeth - In another twist in the ongoing investigation into the murder of Jayde Panayiotou in April last year, a new suspect made a brief appearance in the Port Elizabeth Magistrate's Court on Tuesday.

Zolani Sibeko, 35, appeared briefly in front of Magistrate Este Petzer in court 27 after being arrested at his mother's home in St Albans on Sunday.

State prosecutor Marius Stander said at the time of his arrest, Sibeko had insisted that his surname was Roko.

Stander said Sibeko was up on charges of conspiracy to commit murder, murder, and abduction.

He also indicated that the State would be opposing bail as Sibeko was charged with a schedule 6 offence, and also had an arrest warrant out on him for another matter.

Sibeko has been linked to the conspiracy to murder Jayde, after a month-long investigation - which included cellphone plotting - showed that he had been with co-accused Sizwezakhe Vumazonke, 30, and Sinethemba Nenembe, 29, at least once while they were monitoring the route she travelled to work.

Cellphone plotting also showed that Sibeko was with Vumazonke and Nenembe outside Jayde's Stellen Glen complex in Kabega Park just five days before she was abducted, forced into the boot of a hired vehicle, taken to remote area behind Kwanobuhle and murdered.

Jayde’s husband, Christopher Panayiotou, 29, was arrested shortly after her murder last year. He is accused of orchestrating the murder of his wife.

The State alleged that Panayiotou approached a bouncer who worked for him - Luthando Siyoni - to hire a hitman.

Siyoni has since turned State witness. Vumazonke was arrested shortly afterwards, and is believed to be the hitman. In October last year, Nenembe was linked to the case and also arrested.

Sibeko's attorney was not present in court on Tuesday, and the matter was postponed to Friday, July 22. Stander indicated that the matter would then be referred to the High Court, along with the other accused, who will be making their first appearance next week. 

Read more on:    jayde panayiotou  |  christopher panayiotou  |  port elizabeth  |  crime

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