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Judge summons lawyer for non-appearance

2023-12-05  Roland Routh

Judge summons lawyer for non-appearance

Prominent defence attorney Boris Isaacks has been summoned to court by irate Windhoek High Court Judge Dinnah Usiku.

Isaacks had sent a junior in his place to the supposed plea and trial of a former senior police officer attached to the Women and Child Protection Unit in Keetmanshoop, Morgan Brian Plaatje. The latter refused to be represented by the junior, Nambili Shipena, and Judge Usiku promptly ordered that Isaacks appears in person this morning to explain his conduct. 

Shipena tried to explain to the judge that Isaacks was double-booked, and is currently in Swakopmund on another case. He asked the judge to postpone the matter to June next year. 

State advocate Anna Amukugo opposed the postponement, and said the dates for the plea were set in June this year already. A double-booking by Isaacks is thus not reason enough to derail the trial. Shipena then offered to withdraw if no postponement could be agreed on. 

But Usiku did not want to hear anything, and ordered that Isaacks appear in person to explain.

Plaatje is facing one charge of housebreaking with the intent to murder and murder, read with the provisions of the Combating of Domestic Violence Act; one count of attempted murder, two counts of contravening the Combating of Domestic Violence Act – contravening a protection order –, one count of assault by threat and one count of malicious damage to property, read with the provisions of the Combating of Domestic Violence Act. 

It is alleged by the State that from 25 to 26 June 2021 in Keetmanshoop, the accused broke down the front door of Yvette Sharon Louw’s house by kicking open the door with the intent to murder her, and he did then and there unlawfully and intentionally kill Louw by stabbing her several times with a knife. 

The attempted murder charge relates to an incident on the same date when he unlawfully and intentionally assaulted Dawid Jansen by stabbing him multiple times with the intention to murder him. 

With regards to contravening a protection order, it is alleged that Plaatje contravened the provisions of a protection order Louw had taken out against him on two occasions. 

The assault by threat charge is in relation to an incident when Plaatje allegedly threatened to kill or beat her in circumstances where she believed he had the intention and means to carry out his threat, and caused her to flee her residence. 

The malicious damage charge reflects an incident when he unlawfully and intentionally destroyed her TV set.

According to the summary of substantial facts in the indictment, the accused and Louw were involved in a romantic relationship, and had two children together.

However, two years before her death, she terminated the relationship, and moved into her residence in Keetmanshoop’s Tseiblaagte residential area. 

Due to ongoing assaults and threats of assault by Plaatje, Louw applied and obtained a protection order against him that was valid until August 2022. 

He, however, violated the protection order on 7 May 2021 when he came to her house, insulted and threatened her, and damaged her TV set. 

She opened a criminal case against him, and he was arrested and granted bail. 

It is further stated that the accused again went to Louw’s house during the late-night hours of 25 June 2021, where he found her and her new boyfriend, Jansen.

 He started stabbing the boyfriend, causing him to flee. 

He, thereafter, proceeded to attack Louw by stabbing her several times with a knife, causing her to seek shelter. 

The accused allegedly broke down the front door and the door of the toilet, where she had locked herself, and continued stabbing the victim until she collapsed. 

He then called the police, and reported that he had ‘killed’ her. 

The police arrived and took her to hospital, where she died due to blood loss and injuries caused by the stab wounds. 

Plaatje remains in custody at the Seeis police station.


2023-12-05  Roland Routh

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