Dewani accused’s blackout queried
Cape Town - A policeman was asked on Wednesday why he never reported a health concern raised by a man accused of killing Anni Dewani.
Xolile Mngeni's lawyer, Qalisile Dayimani, wanted to know from Captain Adolf Jonker what went through his mind when his client informed him he had blacked-out in a police cell.
Jonker, who took a statement from Mngeni in November 2010, replied that he had not referred the matter because the blackout could have been caused by anything, including the stress of being arrested.
He said Mngeni seemed to be in “sober senses” when answering the questions, so he did not think it important at the time.
Mngeni's statement formed part of a trial-within-a-trial, in which the judge had to decide whether the State could admit the statement as evidence to be used later in the trial.
The defence had argued the statement was made under duress and also questioned the video's authenticity.
Anni Dewani was killed in Gugulethu on November 13, 2010, in an apparent hijacking while on honeymoon with her husband Shrien.
Mngeni has pleaded not guilty to charges of kidnapping, robbery with aggravating circumstances, murder, and illegal possession of a firearm and ammunition.
Dayimani asked how Jonker knew the blackout was not caused by police assault.
The policeman said he had asked the accused if he had been threatened or assaulted, and his reply had been no.
“My instructions are that this accused had his testicles slammed into a desk drawer (while in police custody),” Dayimani said.
Jonker told the court he checked Mngeni's body for injuries and no visible marks could be seen.
“You didn't look there (at his testicles)?” Henney asked, at which point the court room erupted into laughter.
“No, my lord,” Jonker replied.
“If that happened before (the statement)... It's very sore... I don't think he would have been able to walk to the office if that was the case... and he did.”
The trial continues. - Sapa