Son’s plot to kill dad foiled

2016-06-21 14:00
Taahir Fredricks (right) talks to his lawyer, Sipho Ngubane, ahead of his court appearance.

Taahir Fredricks (right) talks to his lawyer, Sipho Ngubane, ahead of his court appearance. (Ingrid Oellermann, The Witness)

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Pietermaritzburg - While many households were ­celebrating Father’s Day on Sunday, a Pietermaritzburg man was spending time behind bars for allegedly plotting his father’s murder.

Taahir Fredricks, 36, who allegedly told a police officer that he “hates” his father, appeared briefly in the magistrate’s court on Monday on a charge of conspiracy to commit murder.

Fredricks was arrested last week. He was granted bail of R1 000 after ­magistrate M. Boikhutso considered his affidavit and that of Hawks ­investigating officer Captain JD Singh, who said he was not opposed to ­Fredricks’s release on bail.

Singh says in his affidavit that Fredricks “confessed to his crime and takes responsibility” for it. However, Fredricks says in his affidavit, prepared by his lawyer Sipho Ngubane, that he would plead not guilty to the charge of conspiracy to murder.

He did not want to discuss the ­merits of the case, however, as he was advised by his attorney that anything he said at his bail hearing would ­become evidence at his trial, he said.

Fredricks, who previously lived with his father at 17 Lytton Street in the CBD, is charged with conspiring with a local taxi driver identified as Richard Davis to kill his father, Mohamed ­Fredricks. According to the charge sheet, the plot was allegedly hatched between March and April 15.

Singh alleges Fredricks had told him that he “hates his father and requires a clinical mental health programme”.

The policeman said the evidence linking Fredricks to the crime includes the fact that he and Davis — the ­“hitman” he allegedly approached to kill his father — had duplicate copies of the keys to the house. It is also ­alleged that Fredricks had pointed out his father’s room to Davis.

“He wanted the hitman to do the job and pay him after the murder,” said Singh.

He said Davis had reported the ­matter to the police instead. When confronted by police, Fredricks had “confessed to a magistrate”.

He said he was satisfied that ­Fredricks would not flee while on bail as he had already handed over his ­passport and was co-operating fully with the police investigation.

He was also satisfied that Fredricks understood that he should not ­interfere with Davis and his family.

Fredricks’s father and sister have since distanced themselves from him and want him to stay away from them, added Singh.

Fredricks spent the weekend in custody, during which time he hired Ngubane to represent him at his trial.

Ngubane yesterday handed in an ­affidavit by Fredricks, in which he ­undertook not to interfere with any state witnesses in the case, commit any other crimes or flee from his trial.

“I am aware of the gravity of the ­offences I am facing. However, I would much rather face any possible ­consequences than become a fugitive for the rest of my life,” he said.

Fredricks said in the document he is not married, has no children and is unemployed. He added that he had decided not to deal with the merits of the case since it was explained to him that evidence given in his bail ­application would be admissible at his trial. “This is save to say that I intend pleading not guilty to the charge ­levelled against me,” he said.

Fredricks said he has no previous convictions or pending cases, and is not a danger to society or a flight risk, as his passport was taken by the police.

“I do know the state witnesses in this case, but I do not intend to ­interfere with them. I will abide by any [bail] conditions,” he said.

“I have faith in our criminal justice system and I will follow my trial through to the end,” he added.

Fredricks said he could only afford to pay R1 000 bail — the amount set by Boikhutso.

He would live with an aunt in the Montrose area pending his trial.

Boikhutso further ordered him to ­report once a week to Loop Street ­police station.

The case was postponed to July 15.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  crime

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