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Jason Rohde loses bid to get Judge Salie-Hlophe to recuse herself from his bail application

Judge Gayaat Salie-Hlophe declined the application by Jason Rohde ruling to recuse herself. File picture: Leon Lestrade/African News Agency

Judge Gayaat Salie-Hlophe declined the application by Jason Rohde ruling to recuse herself. File picture: Leon Lestrade/African News Agency

Published Nov 5, 2021

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Cape Town - Convicted wife killer Jason Rohde has lost his appeal in the Western Cape High Court to get Judge Gayaat Salie-Hlophe to recuse herself from his bail application.

Rohde brought the application for recusal after he discovered that Judge Salie-Hlophe, who delivered a scathing verdict against him for the murder of his wife Susan in July 2016, was also the judge deciding his bail application.

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That case centred on whether Rohde murdered his wife, then staged her death as a suicide, or whether there was a reasonable possibility that she might have actually killed herself.

During his trial, Rohde’s lawyer had argued that Susan had been so devastated by his affair with an estate agent that she hanged herself in the bathroom of their room at the Spier Hotel in Stellenbosch.

Judge Salie-Hlophe also declined Rohde’s appeal to indefinitely postpone his application to have his bail extended as he awaits his Constitutional Court appeal in the case of the killing of his wife.

The bail application has now been set for November 11 and NPA spokesperson Eric Ntabazalila has said the state will be opposing the bail application.

In October, the Supreme Court of Appeal dismissed Rohde’s appeal against his conviction for the murder and defeating the ends of justice, but reduced his sentence from 20 years imprisonment to 15 years.

In that appeal, which was heard by five judges, Rohde claimed that the State’s investigation of the forensic evidence linked was not objective or thorough.

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