Oscar witness testifies in Corrie trial

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REUTERS

Cornelius "Corrie" Sanders Photo: Reuters

Pretoria - The cellphone expert who recently testified in the murder trial of Paralympian Oscar Pistorius took the stand in the Pretoria High Court on Wednesday to give evidence about cellphones stolen on the night former heavyweight boxer Corrie Sanders was shot.

Captain Francois Möller, a forensic cellphone investigator and analyst, linked three cellphones, stolen during a robbery at Thatch Haven Country Lodge outside Brits on September 22, 2012, to the three men accused of murdering Sanders.

The former boxer was shot during an armed robbery while attending his nephew Michael’s 21st birthday party.

Three Zimbabweans, Samuel Mabena, Chris Moyo and Paida Fish, pleaded not guilty to the murder. They also face charges of malicious damage to property relating to two damaged vehicles at the lodge, robbery, unlawful possession of a firearm and ammunition, and attempted murder after one of the guests was wounded.

The three were arrested on September 27, 2012, in the Oukasie informal settlement, outside Brits.

The men robbed guests of their valuables, including cellphones, car keys and handbags, after shooting Sanders in the arm and abdomen.

He died on September 23.

Möller, who has more than a decade of experience in cellphone analysis, found that Fish used two of the stolen cellphones soon after the incident.

He used one less than two hours after the incident at 9.01pm.

“I received four exhibit bags containing cellphones and SIM cards which I examined,” Möller said.

One of the cellphones, a BlackBerry, belonged to Sanders’s 73-year-old mother, Alida, who testified on Monday. Sanders had bought his mother the phone as a gift.

The other cellphone belonged to one of the guests.

Moyo, according to Möller, used Alida’s other phone, a Nokia C5, after the shooting.

The names and numbers of the three accused were also saved on some of the stolen cellphones after the robbery.

The entire court day was dedicated to Möller’s testimony on Wednesday as he meticulously detailed the records of each of the stolen cellphones. He also determined which SIM card was used in which phone and at what time and who those SIM cards belonged to.

Apart from being tried for the murder of Sanders, Mabena appeared in court in October 2012 in connection with the murder of farmer Mauritz Oberholzer near Brits on September 5 2012.

Moyo and Fish were also linked to several break-ins and robberies in the Brits area. The trial continues.

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Twitter: @LalivZ

Pretoria News


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