Teen beheading accused not a 'professional killer'- lawyer

2016-03-02 14:44

Cape Town – A man accused of beheading a teenager could certainly not be compared to a professional killer who planned every detail beforehand, the Western Cape High Court heard on Wednesday.

Defence lawyer Sheriff Mohamed said during closing arguments that the evidence did not point to his client, Aljar Swartz, committing a premeditated murder in 2013.

“The conduct of the accused is not the conduct of a professional killer that goes about killing and keeps quiet,” he said.

He said Swartz’s friends never thought he was going to kill 15-year-old Lee Adams, and were used to him telling stories.

Prosecutor Carine Teunnisen countered that the way he lured Adams to an abandoned school could only be described as evil.

In a surprise turn of events last week, Swartz admitted to the crimes in a document handed up to court.

Mohamed said the court would have to decide whether these admissions were reliable.

A security guard found the boy’s body at the Ravensmead school in October 2013. The head was later found in a shallow grave in Swartz’s yard.

Swartz acknowledged that he intentionally incited, instigated, persuaded and encouraged four men to lure a victim to Ravensmead to be killed, so he could sell the body parts to a sangoma.

He claimed ownership of a bloody fingerprint on a wall at the crime scene and of a tissue found in his bin with Adams’ blood on it.

Regarding the State’s argument that Satanism was not involved, Mohamed said he had access to an international expert who was willing to interview his client.

Through expert testimony, the court would be able to get insight into the consequences of children being drawn into Satanism at a young age.

The victim’s family stood out in purple in the public gallery. They later explained it was the teen’s favourite colour.

Judge Elize Steyn said she would consider the closing arguments and hand down judgment on 10 March.

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