He just wanted to silence gran, court told

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IOL Rookeya van der Westhuizen INDEPENDENT NEWSPAPERS Rookeya van der Westhuizen, foreground, who survived an attack that left her granddaughter dead. File picture: Timothy Bernard

Johannesburg - She was beaten until the left side of her face turned purple, black and red.

The red mark around her neck showed how Rookeya van der Westhuizen, 75, was allegedly throttled until she lost consciousness and stopped fighting her assailant, who then left her for dead.

Van der Westhuizen and her granddaughter Tracy-Lee Martins were attacked at their Klipspruit West home last April, allegedly by Shinawaaz Ahmento and Kyle Fredericks.

The two have been charged with murder, attempted murder, rape and robbery with aggravating circumstances.

Ahmento’s defence argued that Van der Westhuizen’s injuries were not serious, and it could not be said that he wanted to kill her.

“There’s no J88 or medical report to say what injuries the old lady sustained. He (Ahmento) just wanted to silence her,” advocate Esther Majola contended.

“He just smacked her. He had no intention of killing her. One can’t say the injuries she sustained were so serious that the accused wanted to kill her.”

Arguing in the Johannesburg High Court sitting at the Palm Ridge Magistrate’s Court yesterday, Majola said the accused should instead have been charged with assault.

Van der Westhuizen, who was severely beaten and dragged around the house, survived the attack. Martins, 28, was raped and strangled. She was pregnant at the time. Ahmento confessed that he and Fredericks had smoked drugs before breaking into their house.

The case continues on Monday.

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