Panayiotou warned wife not to stand outside complex – lawyer

2016-10-12 15:00
The accused in the Panayiotou case. (Derrick Spies, News24)

The accused in the Panayiotou case. (Derrick Spies, News24)

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Port Elizabeth - Christopher Panayiotou warned his wife Jayde not to stand outside their Kabega Park complex, from where she was kidnapped and taken to be killed, the Port Elizabeth High Court heard on Wednesday.

When her friend and colleague Cherise Swanepoel called Panayiotou to tell him that Jayde was not outside the complex when she arrived to pick her up, he seemed surprised.

Swanepoel said this while being cross-examined by Terry Price, for Panayiotou.

Panayiotou, Sinethemba Nenembe and Zolani Sibeko are on trial on charges of conspiring, kidnapping, robbing, and killing Jayde on April 21 last year. They pleaded not guilty.

Price said when Swanepoel called him and told him Jayde was not at their arranged pick-up point outside the Stellen Glen complex, his words were: "How do you mean?" Jayde and Swanepoel took turns giving each other lifts to their work at Riebeek College Girls’ High School in Uitenhage.


Price said his client used to tell Jayde not to stand outside because there were people hanging around looking for work. Swanepoel said she would sometimes see people standing outside.

Price said Swanepoel had spent a lot of time with Panayiotou that day. She confirmed they parted late in the afternoon. He asked whether Panayiotou appeared to be "terribly concerned" about Jayde. Swanepoel said he was determined to find her.

Sizwezakhe Vumazonke, believed to be the hitman hired by State witness Luthando Siyoni, died in a Port Elizabeth hospital in September. Siyoni worked as a bouncer at Panayiotou’s Infinity Cocktail Bar in Algoa Park.

On Tuesday, the State described how GPS tracking in the car Vumazonke hired showed he had travelled to Swanepoel's home in Ruth Street, in a secluded area, late at night on April 12. On April 13, he was again at Swanepoel's home.

On April 15 and 16, Vumazonke, Nenembe and Sibeko allegedly circled the Stellen Glen complex. They raced back and forth between Jayde and Swanepoel's residences, but could not find her.

Swanepoel told lawyer Peter Daubermann, representing the other accused, that she would wait inside her premises for Jayde to pick her up because it felt safer.

She would tell Jayde not to leave her complex before she arrived because it wasn’t safe.

She was excused from the stand.

Read more on:    jayde panayiotou  |  christopher panayiotou  |  crime

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