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No bail for double murder accused

2022-02-03  Roland Routh

No bail for double murder accused

Roland Routh

Windhoek High Court Judge Claudia Claasen yesterday dismissed an application by double murder accused Ernst Lichtenstrasser (60) to be released on bail pending the finalisation of his trial.

Lichtenstrasser brought an application for bail on new facts after his two previous bail applications were dismissed. He is accused of shooting and killing two top executives of the Namibian Institute of Mining and Technology (NIMT). 

He is on trial on two counts of murder, two charges of possessing a firearm without a licence, and further charges of possessing ammunition without a licence, defeating or obstructing the course of justice, theft and the unauthorised supply of a firearm and ammunition.

The prosecution is alleging that Lichtenstrasser, a former lecturer at the Tsumeb campus of NIMT, allegedly shot and killed Eckhardt Mueller and Heinz Heimo Hellwig, who were the executive director and deputy director of NIMT, respectively, at Arandis on 15 April 2019. 

Lichtenstrasser claimed in his latest bail application that Covid-19 negatively delayed his trial and that he could as a result not consult with his legal aid lawyer Barend Titus. He also claimed that he suffers from certain mental health conditions.

In her judgement, Claasen stated that he did not prove the existence of the specific mental health conditions of critical proportions as he alluded, nor can it be called new facts as it emanated from his arrest and was in existence at the time of the bail applications in the district court. She further said that while some of the grounds related to the lockdown measures can be construed as new facts, they however do not displace the basis on which bail was refused by the district court, which conditions had not been challenged on appeal.

Caption: (Lichtenstrasser) 

2022-02-03  Roland Routh

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