Cellphone experts take the stand in Senzo Meyiwa murder trial

A new witness is expected to take the stand when the Senzo Meyiwa murder trial resumes in the high court in Pretoria on Monday.

The proceedings swiftly concluded on Friday after the testimonies of two cellphone data experts from the police.

On Friday, the prosecution called upon former police officer and cellphone analyst Sergeant Elphus Mushwana, and Sergeant Petrus Mduduzi Nkosi, responsible for downloading cellphone data, to take the stand.

Their brief testimonies left defence attorneys with fewer questions than anticipated.

Mushwana described the data extraction process for various phones belonging to people who were at Kelly Khumalo’s home when Meyiwa was killed on October 26 2014.

The phones included a Samsung S3, Apple iPhone, ZTE V795, Nokia N8, Blackberry Curve, and another Apple iPhone.

He testified that the Nokia N8 belonged to Kelly’s sister Zandie Khumalo, and that he also extracted data from a SIM card.

The court heard, according to Mushwana, that one of the phones was already “booted up”.

Asked about extracting deleted information, Mushwana explained that the ability depended on the software, stating that he had not specifically checked for it.

Under cross-examination by Sipho Ramosepele, one of the defence lawyers, Mushwana indicated that Sello “Chicco” Twala’s son, Longwe, and Meyiwa’s friend Tumelo Madlala had provided their phone pins to the police.

Advocate Charles Mnisi’s questioning was brief while advocate Zandile Mshololo enquired about procedural practices related to exhibit bags.

Mushwana said he received the phones in bags, and stated that the practice could depend on bag availability, especially for cellphones.

He said he received the phones on October 27 and conducted downloads on the same day.

Meanwhile, Nkosi told the court about a request for data download he received from Sergeant Masondo on February 10 2015.

The request pertained to a Samsung GT00023, a cellphone found in possession of accused number three during his arrest for possession of unlawful firearm in 2015.


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