CAPE TOWN - The defence in the trial of Guatemalan national Diego Dougherty Novella has asked the Western Cape High Court to consider "diminished responsiblility" due to drug intoxication when it sentences the convicted murderer later this week.
Defence lawyer William Booth said he accepted the circumstances of the crime and the "manner of death" were of a serious nature, but argued that should not be the overriding factor.
Novella, a Guatemalan national from a wealthy and prominent family who own a cement business in South America, has been convicted of murdering Gabriela Kabrins Alban, 39, in the hotel room they were sharing at the Camps Bay Retreat, a luxury boutique hotel, on July 29, 2015.
Alban had been strangled and suffered blunt force trauma. Chips, sweets and faeces covered her face, a curling iron had been placed between her legs and a note with the word “cerote“, which means “piece of s***” in Spanish, was placed on her chest.
Booth told the court on Monday that the likelihood of his client committing a crime of this nature again was non-existent and said the accused had "certain psychological problems".