170413. Palm Ridge Magistrate's Court in Ekurhuleni near Thokoza. A Trial within the trial of Shepard Moyo(32) who is charged for 17 counts of robbery, three counts of rape, found in possession of firearm and ammunition. 925 Picture: Dumisani Sibeko.

Johannesburg - Multiple robbery accused Shepard “Axeman” Moyo denied everything during his trial-within-a-trial at the Palm Ridge Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday.

The 32-year-old denied he was ever read his rights during his arrest on September 14 and while giving his statement. He also denied being given a notice of his rights after he was arrested.

Moyo, who is alleged to have committed 17 robberies and three rapes in the Sandton area, also denied being arrested by the police officer who claimed to have arrested him in September 2011.

Moyo is alleged to have targeted mainly Lonehill and Paulshof residents during the early hours of the morning, and to have robbed them while wielding an axe or a bush knife as weapons.

On Wednesday, State prosecutor Tillana Byker put in an application to the court to use the statement Moyo gave to the police when he was arrested as part of the evidence against him.

His defence lawyer, Mpho Milubi, objected to the application, disputing the “whole alleged statement” and arguing that Moyo was not read his rights when his statement was taken.

But State witness Lieutenant-Colonel SJ van der Watt said Moyo was twice read his rights while giving the statement on the day of his arrest.

“At one stage, while giving the statement, I even felt he was incriminating himself and again explained his rights,” he said.

Van der Watt said the intention was not to obtain a statement of confession, but rather a warning statement from Moyo, as procedure, after an arrest was made. He said Moyo had spoken to him in English on the way to the cells, but had chosen to speak in isiZulu for the statement.

Moyo was then read his rights and given the right to remain silent, which he understood.

Sergeant Jacob Mngonyama interpreted his rights to him in isiZulu as chosen by Moyo.

Moyo disputed this and said his rights were explained to him only when he appeared in court.

He also claimed Mngonyama was the officer who had arrested him in 2011 and not Warrant Officer Deon Jones. Mngonyama said he was not on the scene on the day of Moyo’s arrest.

The trial continues.

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The Star