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Amahle Quku’s killer chooses to remain silent and not testify in his own defence

Amahle Quku. Leonard Mzingeli opted not to testify in his own defence after the court heard admissions by himself, saying that he choked Quku to death with his bare hands. File picture: Facebook

Amahle Quku. Leonard Mzingeli opted not to testify in his own defence after the court heard admissions by himself, saying that he choked Quku to death with his bare hands. File picture: Facebook

Published Jun 9, 2022

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Cape Town - The man who admitted to killing Amahle Quku will on July 4 know his fate as his trial enters its final stages, with arguments in court on whether or not he will be convicted for rape.

Leonard Mzingeli opted not to testify in his own defence after the court heard admissions by himself, saying that he choked Quku to death with his bare hands and then dragged her body near a dam in Browns Farm, Philippi.

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He pleaded “not guilty” to two counts of rape and attempted murder of another woman who testified in court that she was attacked by Mzingeli and stabbed over 20 times while he allegedly raped her in October 2019, eight months before Quku was murdered on June 20, 2020.

Mzingeli said he had sex with Quku but he did not clarify whether this was consensual.

The State said the manner in which Quku was killed did not coincide with the injuries she sustained.

State advocate Renee Uys said with regards to Quku being raped: “It can only be deduced that in considering all the injuries she was assaulted to be submissive during the rape, and murdered thereafter”.

She asked the court to accept the evidence provided in the testimony of a single witness, being the rape survivor, based on the consistency and clarity she provided during testimony.

“The accused failing to testify after making multiple admissions and the State calling six witnesses is alarming.

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“Statements by the accused being put to the State witnesses is not evidence.

“The court thus has no version by the accused before it,” Uys said.

Because Mzingeli chose to remain silent there was very little for the defence to place before the judge.

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Uys said, “it shows that the accused wanted the State to prove their case without him having to expose himself to cross-examination”.

“The accused has thus accepted his fate and the consequences that flow from his decision.

“He accepts this even after being warned by the court.”

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