Patel's lawyer accuses police of presuming his guilt in wife's murder

2016-10-25 21:23
Rameez Patel. (News24)

Rameez Patel. (News24)

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Polokwane - The defence in the trial of Limpopo businessman Rameez Patel on Tuesday accused the police of not fully investigating whether an intruder could have killed his wife.

Patel's wife, Fatima, was beaten, strangled and shot in the couple's home last year. Patel's version is that an intruder entered their home and killed her, but the State maintains that Patel killed his wife.

Patel's lawyer, Tumi Mokoena, in the Limpopo High Court in Thohoyandou attempted to discredit the evidence of police Constable David Nkuna, asking questions about the way police handled the murder scene and conducted interviews with witnesses.

Mokoena argued that police failed to conduct a proper investigation as they presumed from the start that Patel was the killer.

During cross-examination Mokoena told Nkuna that he did not investigate if there had been a robbery because of this presumption.

Mokoena said he believed police had jumped to conclusions because Patel had changed his clothes (which had been stained with his wife's blood after the murder), he had not handed these clothes immediately over to the police and he had failed to explain if something was missing from the house.

Nkuna dismissed Mokoena's interpretation of events, saying if that was the case he would have arrested Patel the same day his wife was murdered.

Nkuna told the court that he had treated Patel initially as a witness who could help their investigation.

Six days after Fatima's death, Nkuna and other investigators linked Patel to the murder.

The trial will continue on Wednesday.

Read more on:    rameez patel  |  crime

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