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Cape Town - Police this week arrested a woman in the so-called Gumtree murder case, bringing the number of people accused of the murder of Olwyn Cowley, 21, to five.
The woman, Tania Majiedt, is believed to be the girlfriend of Jason Elias, who has also been charged in connection with Cowley’s murder.
The couple appeared in the Western Cape High Court on Friday alongside co-accused Soegbudien Abvajee, Shawaal Staggie and Rameez Felix, for a pre-trial conference.
The State alleges that Elias, Staggie and Felix made contact with Cowley in August last year under the pretence that Elias was interested in buying a silver BMW 325ti, which Cowley had advertised on Gumtree.
The trio and Abvajee then met Cowley at a Shell petrol station in Century City around 5pm on August 30 and Elias took the car for a test drive, while Abvajee and Cowley accompanied him.
Cowley was shot dead along the way and his body was dumped along Baden Powell Drive, it is alleged.
The State also alleges that Elias gave Cowley’s cellphone to Majiedt at her home in Highlands Village, Mitchells Plain, where he and Abvajee also washed Cowley’s car.
According to the charge sheet, Majiedt disposed of the cellphone.
While the State does not allege that she was at the petrol station or in the vehicle when Cowley was shot, she has also been charged with murder.
A post mortem showed that Cowley had been shot several times.
The five face charges of murder, robbery with aggravating circumstances and the unlawful possession of firearms and ammunition. The State intends to prove that the murder was premeditated.
The case is expected to return to the high court next month.
It was previously reported that, at the time of Cowley’s murder, Abvajee was a parolee who had a string of previous convictions and was once one of the Cape’s most wanted men.
He served eight years behind bars for armed robbery and was paroled from the Drakenstein Medium A Correctional Centre for good behaviour about four months before Cowley was killed.
However, his parole was revoked in September last year.