• July 11th, 2020

Businessman to appeal murder conviction

WINDHOEK - A 59-year-old businessman, who was recently convicted of murder with direct intent, has approached the registrar of the High Court to appeal his conviction. 

Trevor Brockerhoff, the lawyer for Sakarias Mathias, who was convicted of murder by Windhoek High Court Judge Naomi Shivute, on Monday, filed his leave to appeal the conviction. 

Judge Shivute convicted Mathias of murder after he fired a shot that fatally wounded a 21-year-old girl at a bar in Katutura. 

The judge convicted him of murdering Magdalena Fredericks when he shot her at point blank range at BSK Bar at Katutura central shops in an alleged fit of jealousy. 

He denied this at the start of his trial and told the court the victim was accidentally shot when he fired at a certain Patrick Awala who had robbed him earlier of his money. 

He claimed that Hawala pulled the victim in front of him and used her as a human shield when he fired the shot. Judge Shivute rejected this version as false. 

According to Brockerhoff, the judge erred in law or fact by finding that no robbery took place whilst the same is attested to by at least witnesses during the trial. 

He also contend that Mathias shot the deceased in a fit of jealousy while no evidence of a prior relationship was presented to form the basis for the apparent jealous fit. The defence also took issue with Awala’s testimony, saying he was faced with a multitude of contradictions and discrepancies in his evidence. “It misdirected itself on the fact in finding that the version as put forward by Awala was consistent with the proven facts while in fact it contradicts not only the bulk of the State’s case, but the version of the scene of crime officer and his own as set out in his two witness statements.” 

Brockerhoff further claims that Judge Shivute was wrong when she rejected the version of Mathias that Awala used the deceased as a human shield while it was set as a distinct possibility by Dr Mamadi Guriras and its finding that the condition (drunkenness) of the deceased was not a contributing factor to her death when it was confirmed by Dr Guriras. 

He further claims that the judge erred when she found that BSK Bar belonged to the appellant and thus he should have detained his assailants inside the bar where no such evidence of ownership was presented to the court and lastly that the court was wrong in rejecting the appellant’s version of event where it was materially corroborated by the evidence presented before court. Judge Shivute sentenced Mathias to 35 years in prison. The matter will now be set down by the registrar for a hearing and if leave is granted, it will be heard in the Supreme Court in due time. Mathias will remain in custody if not granted bail pending the finalisation of the appeal. Advocate Palmer Khumalo represented the State during the trial.


Roland Routh
2019-12-11 07:46:42 | 6 months ago

Be the first to post a comment...

You might also like...