Defence lawyers ask for Meyiwa murder trial to be postponed

The trial against five men accused of killing soccer star Senzo Meyiwa has been postponed.

Ballistics expert Chris Mangena was expected to take the stand again at the Pretoria High Court on Thursday after his damning testimony on Wednesday.

However, defence lawyers requested that he be cross-examined at a later stage after they had consulted with their ballistics expert.

Meyiwa was shot and killed at the home of his then-girlfriend Kelly Khumalo in Vosloorus, east of Johannesburg on October 26 2014.

The court has heard that Meyiwa died within minutes after being shot.

Pathologist Johannes Steenkamp testified earlier in the week that Meyiwa survived for seconds or minutes after he was shot, ruling out any possibility of him surviving for hours.

According to Steenkamp, Meyiwa was shot by an individual who was taller than him, a conclusion drawn from the angle and nature of the gunshot wound.

Bongani Ntanzi, Muzikawukhulelwa Sibiya, Mthobisi Mncube, Mthokoziseni Maphisa, and Fisokuhle Ntuli are on trial for Meyiwa’s murder and have all entered pleas of not guilty.

Of the five suspected men, Ntanzi and Mncube have experienced the toughest time in the dock.

On Wednesday, Mangena said the bullet recovered from the crime scene originated from a firearm discovered at Mncube’s rented residence in 2015.

He said test shots discharged from a 9mm parabellum pistol belonging to Mncube were consistent with the bullet recovered from the crime scene.

He further testified that the killer was probably in front of the deceased, and that the firearm was in contact with Meyiwa’s chest, adding that he would not rule out the possibility of a scuffle.

“The possibility of an altercation or struggle between the deceased and the shooter cannot be ruled out,” said Mangena.

His assertion supported claims made by previous witnesses who were at the house when Meyiwa was killed.

The witnesses, Zandie Khumalo, Tumelo Madlala, and Mthokozisi Thwala previously testified that two intruders invaded the Khumalo home and demanded cellphones and money.

They stated in their respective testimonies that a scuffle erupted between the intruders and the people who were inside the house.

The court heard that Meyiwa tried to fight one of the intruders before a shot rang out leading to his death.

The intruder Meyiwa fought is said to be a tall and dark-skinned man whom the witnesses positively identified as Ntanzi.

Mncube, on the other hand, was identified as the man with dreadlocks on the day Meyiwa was killed.

His girlfriend took the stand earlier in the week and positively identified him in a photo evidence displayed in court.

The trial continues on Friday with a new witness.


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