Dewani trial told of jewellery found in roof
Women’s jewellery was found in the roof of a shack belonging to a friend of Anni Dewani’s alleged killer, the Western Cape High Court heard today
Alice Mcinga was called to the stand during Xolile Mngeni’s trial to explain how she found a bracelet and watch in her son Lukhaya’s shelter on November 16, 2010.
Anni Dewani was shot dead in Gugulethu on November 14, 2010, in an apparent hijacking while on honeymoon with her husband Shrien.
Mngeni has pleaded not guilty to charges of kidnapping, robbery with aggravating circumstances, murder, and illegal possession of a firearm and ammunition.
Mcinga said she and her son lived in Sidima Crescent, Khayelitsha. Mngeni and Lukhaya were good friends.
She testified that police arrived at her house on November 16 that year and arrested her son, Mngeni, and two women in his corrugated iron shack at the back of the property.
She went to the shelter after they left to clean up, and found a plastic money bag stashed in the roof frame. She opened the bag and found the jewellery.
Mcinga confirmed that the items before the court looked like the ones she had found.
“I took these items and hid them. [Then] I went to the grandmother of the accused [Mngeni]. [I told her] if the police arrive, she must refer the police to me,” she testified.
Shareen Riley, for the State, asked why she went to Mngeni’s relative and not to the police.
Mcinga said she knew the police planned to visit the grandmother.
It was not clear when she handed the items over to her.
Earlier, a Khayelitsha school teacher testified how she was sold a Blackberry phone by Mngeni.
The witness, whose identity was withheld to protect her, said she had known him for three years at the time and had lived in the same vicinity.
She said Mngeni approached her at a taxi rank in Khayelitsha on November 14, 2010.
“I met a guy named Watti [Mngeni’s nickname].... Watti told me he had got a phone which he is selling... for an amount of R500,” she said.
She told him she did not have money on her, but that she was going to Century City and could meet him later in the day.
He came to her home the same day, around 7pm, with the phone.
“I asked him: why are you selling this phone of yours to me for R500? He said: Mama, I’ve got a problem. In December, I’m going to circumcision school. I’ve bought everything, but I’m short of clothing which amounts to R500.”
The court heard that the phone was off when it was handed to the witness. It did not have a charger or a simcard.
“It was new and it was all right. Okay. It was a phone that looked neat and was not faulty,” the witness said.
Mngeni apparently told her he would return the next day, November 15, 2010, with the charger. She could pay him at the same time.
However, Mngeni arrived only on November 18 and was accompanied by the police. She handed over the phone and it was bagged as evidence.
The witness was asked if the phone in court was the one she had handed over.
She took a good look at it and then said: “It looked like this one”.
Dayimani, for Mngeni, spent little time cross-examining the two witnesses.
The case continues.