Novella claims there is a conspiracy against him

2018-02-27 22:22
Guatemalan murder accused Diego Novella (File, Gallo Images)

Guatemalan murder accused Diego Novella (File, Gallo Images)

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Cape Town - Murder accused Diego Novella told the Western Cape High Court on Tuesday that there was "an effort to tarnish his name at all costs".

He made the claim after prosecutor Mornay Julius cross-examined him on the testimony of a hotel employee.

Julius questioned Novella about the testimony of Diana Mbekani, who spoke to Gabriela Kabrins Alban the day before her body was found at a Camps Bay hotel on July 29, 2015.

She told Mbekani that she "missed her parents and her dogs and had business to attend to in the US".

Mbekani had previously testified that Alban was unhappy because Novella, her boyfriend, was delaying their trip back to Guatemala.

But Novella said on Tuesday: "We didn't speak anything about that."

"It's not something Gaby would say. I believe information was given to her. I don't believe Gaby would comment that."

When asked to explain who gave Mbekani false information, Novella was unable to an answer.

Novella then listed a number of instances where witnesses made "false accusations".

He said toxicologist Jaco Van Zyl found no cannabis in his blood after his outburst in court in November 2017.

Novella claims that his "breakdown" was a result of dagga use.

"He found traces of methamphetamine and urine," said Novella.

He told the court that police officers who took the stand had conflicting testimonies.

"The police say I resisted arrest, others say I did not," he said.

Judge Vincent Saldanha asked Novella to list any other witnesses who gave false testimonies.

"I will have to think or talk to my lawyer after I testify," answered Novella.

"It is very tiring emotionally to be in this situation."

Upon requesting a list of witnesses and more time to think, Julius put it to him that he was attempting to "fabricate evidence".

Earlier on Tuesday, Diego explained that demonic possession was the reason he could not recall the days before Alban's death.

"After two years and seven months since the incident, I have discovered a strange moment," said Novella.

"The mixture of substances on the night of July 28, 2014 - since that moment, something beyond myself took possession.

"An entity took possession of Gaby and myself."

Novella previously testified that he and Alban had consumed Cannabis oil, dagga and sceletium on the night before the murder.

"It is possible that the substances led to a certain percentage of memory loss, but this was a possession. A demonic entity took both of us," Novella told the court.

Saldanha asked Novella to clarify whether the use of substances led to demonic possession.

"After mixing the substances it opened another dimension to allow these demonic entities to take possession of Gaby and myself."

Novella also said that he had been in contact with a psychic medium from KwaZulu-Natal, who confirmed to him that he was indeed possessed at the time of Alban's murder.

Novella had previously testified that he had killed a "demonic entity" who was, in actual fact, Alban.

The trial resumes on Wednesday.

Read more on:    cape town  |  crime

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