STRANGLED Gafsa Roberts. Photo: Supplied
STRANGLED Gafsa Roberts. Photo: Supplied

Defence says the sale of the house was motive for murder in mom’s killing

By Genevieve Serra Time of article published Jun 11, 2021

Share this article:

Cape Town - The statement of the daughter of a woman who was allegedly murdered by her son – who is facing verdict next month – was torn apart in court when the defence claimed the motive for the killing was the sale of the house.

Shakoor Roberts, 28, is on trial for the murder of his mother Gafsa Roberts, 61, whose body was found hidden inside her wheelie bin outside her home in Tafelsig in 2015.

Murder accused, Shakoor Roberts

The case has been dragging on for the last six years in the Mitchells Plain Magistrate’s Court.

Today was the last leg of closing arguments for the defence, before a verdict can be reached.

Roberts’ legal counsel argued the testimonies of several State witnesses, who had been family and friends of the deceased, were weak and lacked credibility, hinging on hearsay.

Gafsa’s neighbours were part of the main panel of witnesses.

The courtroom was left in shock when Magistrate Mary Jacwu pointed to the irregularities in the testimonies of Rushana Adams and her husband Moegamat.

The court heard that via cellphone records, Adams had never called her mother on the Friday she disappeared.

Adams insisted she had made contact with her mother using a different cellphone number.

Cape Town - Rushana Adams is the sister of Shakoor Roberts who is accused of murdering his mother, Gafsa Roberts - Photographer Tracey Adams / ANA

Gafsa had intended on visiting Adams at her home in Hanover Park.

During her previous testimony, Adams claimed she had called her mother’s cellphone on Friday to determine where she was.

It was also revealed that Gafsa’s house had been sold shortly after the murder and the defence claimed the motive had been to remove Roberts from the premises.

The house was sold by the family in a deal which Roberts had not been part of.

The matter was postponed to July 23 for verdict.

Roberts is currently imprisoned at Pollsmoor Prison. Roberts, apparently with schizophrenia, had been deemed mentally fit to stand trial.

Relatives became worried and reported the grandmother missing while Roberts claimed his mother had left home for Hanover Park to visit her daughter (Adams).

But she had never arrived at the destination.

On March 2, 2015, neighbours became suspicious of a foul smell coming from the dirt bin outside of Gafsa’s home.

GRIM: The body of murdered mom Gafsa Roberts was found in wheelie bin

Neighbours then found Gafsa's body which had already been washed after death.

Roberts was arrested and charged.

The State revealed they were in possession of two exhibits which could be the nail in the coffin for Roberts.

His mother had obtained an interdict, fearing for her life after he allegedly nearly broke her arm. She claimed she was emotionally and physically abused by Roberts.

She further detailed in the document that Roberts said she was not his mother and that both of his friends had died and had used abusive and foul language, chasing her away then later threatening he would do something to her.

The post-mortem report was presented to the court earlier this year which indicated the deceased had severe head trauma; had been throttled a couple of times and her lungs were damaged – including her throat.

The post mortem also showed that she was hit with a blunt object in the head.

Previously, a taped recording of Roberts’s alleged confession was deemed inaudible.

The recording had been made by a relative where Roberts claimed he had killed his mother and had asked her to recite Islamic prayers to prepare her for her death.

Weekend Argus

Share this article: