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Durban - The family of murdered honeymoon bride, Anni Dewani, have slammed the latest legal attempt by her husband, Shrien Dewani, as a “desperate attempt” to stave off prosecution in South Africa.
Anni’s mother, Nilam Hindocha, is suffering from cancer and wants closure as soon as possible.
“If he is innocent like he claims he is, why does he not want to go to South Africa and tell the court what happened that night?” Anni’s uncle, Ashok Hindocha, said from Sweden on Sunday.
“We cannot understand why he is doing this. We want closure and Shrien is the only one who can do that,” he said.
On Friday, Dewani’s lawyers made an application to London’s High Court to have his case reviewed. It came as South African authorities, led by the National Prosecuting Authority, delivered a written undertaking to the British courts that, should he be extradited, Dewani would be returned to the UK if he were not well enough for trial .
Hindocha said Dewani’s challenge was yet another attempt to delay his returning to face trial.
“All we have ever asked from Shrien since the day our beautiful daughter was killed was for him to go to South Africa and clear his name. We are hoping that courts in the UK deal with this matter quickly so that the healing process can begin for us,” he said.
Hindocha said that Anni’s mother was battling cancer and she was desperate to see justice done for her daughter.
“The South African authorities have done all they can do to ensure he would be well looked after in South Africa. We fail to understand what this latest legal challenge is about. You have to ask yourself if the tables were turned would the UK government accept all the delays? This must surely affect international relations between the two countries.”
Nilam Hindocha told the Daily Mail: “It has been more than three years since our dear daughter was killed and we are desperate for Shrien to tell the police what happened. Unless Shrien is back in South Africa and in front of a judge there, we cannot rest.”
Dewani, 33, is receiving treatment for depression and post-traumatic stress disorder.
He is being detained under the Mental Health Act and suffers post-traumatic stress disorder and depression. Doctors say he may be unfit to stand trial, although it is accepted he can travel. But various hearings have been told that he has been able to visit his family home, swim, use the computer and stay in a caravan on hospital grounds.
Dewani’s application is for a “certificate of a point of law of general public importance” to take the case to the Supreme Court.
It is now up to High Court judges to decide whether to issue a certificate but, if they choose not to, his legal avenues in the UK are effectively closed.