Six years, almost R10 million and at least one farm – that’s what Fred van der Vyver and his family sacrificed to prove once and for all he should never have been prosecuted for the murder of his girlfriend nor put through the inordinate amount of stress he has endured.
Yet as the Van der Vyvers celebrate their latest court victory another family remains in mourning, troubled by unanswered questions and searching for closure.
Professor Jan Lotz and his wife, Juanita, are no nearer to knowing who killed their daughter, Inge, on 16 March 2005 – and according to those in the know they’ll probably never know.
The shocking police work that could have sent an innocent man to jail for life also ensured that the real killer of the 22-year-old Stellenbosch masters student got away with murder.
“The case has gone stale now,” says Antony Altbeker, a respected criminologist whose book, Fruit of a Poisoned Tree, was based on the Lotz murder and subsequent investigations.
“The family will never get the justice they seek. It’s hard to produce new evidence after six years – the only thing that would be believable now is a full-blown confession and that’s just wishful thinking.
“The police have allowed a killer to walk the streets.”
Read more in YOU 25 August 2011.
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