Beard bail hearing postponed

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Roedolf Viviers

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Rudolph Viviers allegedly mocked, then killed Mohammed Fazaaz Kazi. Photo: Bongiwe Mchunu

Krugersdorp - The bail application of a man accused of murdering a Muslim man was postponed to next week by the Krugersdorp Regional Court on Friday.

Magistrate Reginald Dama said the matter would resume on Thursday at noon.

Dama told Roedolf Viviers he was “very sorry” about this delay.

He told the court: “He needs to know his fate.”

Viviers acknowledged that there were also financial implications for those who paid Viviers' legal fees.

Viviers and another man, Zayne van Tonder, 33, allegedly made racist remarks to Muhammad Fayaaz Kazi and his friend Anser Mahmood about their beards, at a Chicken Licken outlet in Magaliesburg on August 6, 2012.

An argument and a fight ensued. Kazi was severely beaten and died in hospital.

Prosecutor Leshia Surendra began cross-examining one of Viviers' lawyers, Hendrick Nortjie, on Friday.

She asked why he had not declared a document, which he referred to during testimony, before the court.

Nortjie, who is blind, said the documents were notes of names and dates. He offered to hand them over, and interpret them if a Braille interpreter could not immediately be found.

She asked whether he had been paid for Viviers' forthcoming trial.

Nortjie replied he had been paid up to January 28, but said beyond this he could not answer as that was privileged information.

Earlier, he told the court that Viviers' employer before his arrest was willing to offer him work if he was released.

Viviers' mother was seriously ill with lung disease, and was being cared for by her niece, whom Nortjie described as “salt of the earth”.

However, the niece and her husband could not care for Mrs Viviers indefinitely because of financial constraints.

Viviers' mother was “also suffering because of the stress going with this case”, Nortjie said.

He said there were concerns about Mahmood's affidavit, which he described as “interesting reading”.

This was because Mahmood said he had picked up a brick and called the two men, whom he described as the aggressors, to follow him into the street outside the fast food outlet.

Mahmood initially referred to two men, but later said he and Kazi were confronted by a group.

At this point, Surendra asked for an adjournment so Kazi's family could attend Friday prayers.

Gerber said that while he respected their religion, it was not necessary for them to be present during cross examination.

“(Viviers') rights should also be respected... His rights should be weighed up against those of the family,” he said.

Dama granted the adjournment. - Sapa


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