Cape Town - Fred van der Vyver, the man acquitted of murdering his Stellenbosch girlfriend Inge Lotz in 2005, has approached the UN Human Rights Committee in an attempt to win damages and recover costs for what he believes was his unjust treatment by prosecutors.
An application to the committee, drafted by senior advocates Dup de Bruyn and Barry Pienaar, maintains that Van der Vyver’s human rights were compromised.
It also argues that the government should pay damages to him. The complaint was filed with the UN’s Geneva head office.
Ryan Tutt, a member of Van der Vyver’s legal team, told the Cape Argus he had been instructed not to comment on the specifics of the complaint.
“We do not wish to comment… save to say that it relates to the violation of our client’s rights in terms of the preamble and articles 7, 9 and 17 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, to which South Africa is a signatory state.”
Article 7 prohibits torture and cruel, inhuman or degrading punishment. Article 9 recognises the right to liberty and security.
Article 17 mandates the right of privacy. It protects people against unlawful attacks on their honour and reputation.
Lotz was murdered at her flat in March 2005. Van der Vyver was charged with the murder, but acquitted in 2007. He successfully sued the police for R46 million, but the decision was reversed on appeal.
Lotz’s parents lodged a civil case against Van der Vyver, but it was settled out of court in 2009. Van der Vyver then made an unsuccessful approach to the Constitutional Court.