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Date set for Dewani murder trial

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Shrien Dewani, accused of murdering his wife Anni, leaves the Western Cape High Court under police escort last month. File photo: Brenton Geach

Cape Town - A Western Cape High Court judge on Friday set October 6 as the provisional start date for the murder trial of British businessman Shrien Dewani.

Dewani was extradited from Britain in April after losing a three-year battle to avoid facing trial in SA, where three men convicted of the murder have implicated him in the killing.

Friday was Dewani’s third appearance in the Western Cape High Court on charges of conspiracy to commit kidnapping, robbery with aggravating circumstances, murder, kidnapping, and defeating the ends of justice.

The State alleges that he acted in common purpose and conspired with Cape Town residents Zola Tongo, Mziwamadoda Qwabe and Xolile Mngeni to kill his wife, Anni.

Dewani claimed he and Anni were kidnapped at gunpoint as they drove through Gugulethu in Cape Town in a taxi in November 2010.

The couple had been on honeymoon in the country. He was released unharmed, but his wife's body was found in the abandoned car the next day. She had been shot dead.

Dewani has not yet been asked to plead.

He appeared in court in May when it was decided that he would remain at Valkenberg Hospital in Cape Town to receive further treatment for his mental health.

Dewani will stay at Valkenberg during the observation period. He is due back in court on August 15.

Before being extradited to South Africa Dewani had been detained in a hospital in Britain for depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. - Sapa, Reuters


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