Dr Antonel Olckers, a DNA expert and the defence's first witness to be called in Henri van Breda triple murder trial. Picture: Catherine Rice/ANA

Cape Town - The first defence witness has taken the stand in the case against triple murder accused Henri van Breda.

Dr Antonel Olckers has called into question the validity of the State's DNA analysis and has criticised the "non compliance of standard operating procedures".

Olckers, a DNA expert, said she received data for just 151 DNA samples, despite the fact that 216 samples were collected from the crime scene.

Read: #VanBreda: State wraps up case

67 blood spatter stains on Van Breda's shorts

Henri van Breda, 22, is facing three charges of murder. He stands accused of the axe killings of his mother, Teresa, father, Martin and brother, Rudi. He also faces a charge of attempted murder for allegedly attacking his sister Marli, who was 16 years old at the time. She survived the attack, but suffered severe brain injuries and cannot recall the events of January 27, 2015, rendering her unable to testify. Henri also faces a charge of defeating the ends of justice. 

Olckers told the Western Cape High Court on Monday that she disputed the state's DNA expert Lieutenant Colonel Sharlene Otto's contention that "optimal results" from the testing of the DNA samples indicated that the non-compliance of standard operating procedures was not significant.

Rather, she said "these two statements would be in conflict" and would invalidate the data.

In August, Otto who is the chief forensic analyst at the police’s forensic laboratory, testified that “no unknown DNA was found on the scene” which is the Van Breda family home in the luxury de Zalze Estate in Stellenbosch.

Van Breda has claimed that a laughing, axe-wielding intruder, wearing gloves, a balaclava and dark clothing, was behind the brutal attack.