Cops deny assaulting suspect for confession

Zinhle Mapumulo

Zinhle Mapumulo

Ntambudzeni Matsenene, co-accused of killing former City Press editor Mathatha Tsedu's son, Avhatakali Netshisaulu, had no injuries and did not complain of being assaulted by the police, the Johannesburg high court heard yesterday.

Each time he was booked out for further investigations, on his return he would be searched for visible injuries, the court heard.

Matsenene and his two co-accused, Mulalo Sivhidzho and Arnold Sello, are on trial for the murder of Netshisaulu after Sivhidzho allegedly hired the two men to kill her husband.

Three days after he was arrested, however, Matsenene confessed to conspiring to and executing the plan to kill Netshisaulu. He implicated his co-accused but he changed his tune and told the court that he was forced by the police to confess.

He said he was tortured, assaulted and deprived of food and sleep.

Three police officers who were on duty while Matsenene was detained in Muldersdrift testified yesterday that at no point did the accused complain about any police brutality.

Matsenene's lawyer, Harold Knopp, insisted that he was beaten up and tortured by the police day and night in Parktown.

Constable John Molewa said he did not know what happened in Parktown as he was stationed at Muldersdrift.

"I cannot say if he was assaulted or not. But I can tell the court that Matsenene had no injuries. Each time he was booked out, on his return he would be inspected," he said.

The trial continues tomorrow.