Sat Sep 23 00:24:00 SAST 2017

Van Breda's socks shed light on the night of the gruesome family murder

By Tanya Farber | 2017-09-12 06:41:34.0

Henri van Breda in court on Wednesday 17 May 2017 Picture: Esa Alexander

A pair of grey shorts and white socks worn by Henri van Breda were “exposed to multiple blood shedding events”‚ while urine was also found on the shorts.

This came to light on Monday in the High Court in Cape Town where Van Breda stands accused of the murder of his parents and brother at their luxury home at De Zalze in Stellenbosch in January 2015.

He is also on trial for the attempted murder of his sister who suffered traumatic brain injuries and has retrograde amnesia as a result and cannot testify.

The shorts and socks have been a much-awaited focus in the case ever since the NPA referenced them in June 2016 when Van Breda was finally arrested – 17 months after the murders took place.

Reading from a thick file‚ blood spatter expert Captain Marius Joubert said he had come to the conclusion that the blood spatters suggest the grey shorts “were in close proximity to Rudi (Henri’s brother) and Martin (Henri’s father) when force was applied to the blood source of those victims”.

When will the curtain fall on the Van Breda tragedy?

It was also found that some of the spatters on the shorts were “saturated in urine” which had fully penetrated the fabric of the shorts.

Joubert also reported that 16 “mechanisms responsible for blood stains” were identified on the white socks which Van Breda was wearing in the early hours of the morning when he called emergency services for help.

At the “back of the white socks”‚ it was found that they (the socks) had been exposed to “blood shedding events in close proximity to Teresa (Henri’s mother) and Rudi too” when forces were applied to those victims.

It was also suggested that the socks were in contact at some point with Martin van Breda.

The media was not entitled to a copy of the report as yet‚ since more will be revealed in court on Tuesday.

As Joubert read the report in minute detail‚ Van Breda sat expressionless in the dock‚ spinning his ring‚ which he had removed from his finger‚ around and around.

This spectre of the fidgety Van Breda has become a case of déjà vu for anyone sitting in on the trial‚ and public interest seems to have waned with the public gallery almost empty on Monday.

For those in the court in a legal or journalistic capacity‚ Joubert’s appearance – though frustrating as he spoke so softly – came as a major relief.

His recent illness had led to a lengthy postponement – and still lingers in his voice which was at times hardly audible.

He read from his report for approximately four hours on Monday‚ only pausing briefly for a few questions from state prosecutor Susan Galloway or Judge Siraj Desai.

The case continues on Tuesday.

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