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Köes murder trial paused

2021-09-29  Maria Amakali

Köes murder trial paused
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The trial of three men accused of killing an elderly couple in the area of KЪes, in the //Kharas region three years ago, was postponed after one of the accused’s lawyer withdrew from the case. Linus Samaria, lawyer to Andries Afrikaner (39), informed the court he was withdrawing from the case due to irreconcilable differences and the two could not agree on the way forward on a complaint letter against the prosecution.

Before withdrawing, Samaria said the complaint letter contains grievances on how prosecutor Marthino Olivier was conducting the prosecution on behalf of the State. In response, Olivier said any grievances about him should be directed to the prosecutor general’s office and not to the court. Judge Dinah Usiku postponed the case to 1 October for new trial dates and for Afrikaner to apply for a new lawyer.

Afrikaner is on trial alongside Julius Frederick Arndt (42) and Johannes Christiaan (38). They face two counts of murder, two counts of housebreaking with intent to rob and robbery with aggravating circumstances, one count of rape, alternatively violating a dead body, conspiracy to commit robbery with aggravating circumstances and/or murder and/ or rape, and housebreaking with intent to steal and theft.

According to the State, the accused acted with a common purpose at all material times when they allegedly broke into the house of Gielam and Susara Aletta Botha during the late-night hours of 1 February 2018 and stole at least N$550 cash, one measuring tape, an electrical plug, a tire gauge and a bulb.

After the deceased discovered the theft, they arranged for burglar bars to be installed at their residence. But before that could be done, the accused returned the very next night and gained entrance by breaking windows or doors, the indictment reads.

During the ransacking of the residence, it is alleged, they came across the elderly couple and murdered Gielam by hitting him with a piece of iron and shooting him in the mouth with a rifle that belonged to the deceased. Thereafter, it is said, they raped the elderly woman, or alternatively had intercourse with her dead body after they stabbed her several times and strangled her with a shoelace.

At the start of the trial, the group admitted they were on the farm that fateful night, but they all denied responsibility for the murders. 


2021-09-29  Maria Amakali

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