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19 Oct 2011 15:12
The results of blood alcohol tests conducted on Eugene Terre’Blanche’s body at the scene of his murder are still outstanding 18 months after his death, according to the lawyer defending one of the men accused of killing the right-wing leader.
Chris Mahlangu (28) and a teenager have pleaded not guilty to housebreaking and robbery with aggravating circumstances and the murder of the farmer on April 3 2010.
The teenager’s defence lawyer, Norman Arendse, told the court that it was important for the defence to know what Terre’Blanche’s blood alcohol levels were, because it would affect the thickness of blood, which might shed a different light on the blood spatter described by a forensic analyst.
Only once the defence had that information could they could ask forensic policeman Ian van der Nest to return to the stand, Arendse said.
Van der Nest testified on Tuesday that the blood stain patterns did not indicate that Terre’Blanche had fought with his attackers before he died.
On Wednesday, Mahlangu’s lawyer Kgomotoso Tlouane said his client would later explain why Terre’Blanche had semen on his penis.
Tlouane added that Mahlangu would testify that he had been beaten by Terre’Blanche in a separate incident before the murder.
When this allegedly happened, the suspect—who had worked for Terre’Blanche for five months—reported the matter to the Ventersdorp police, who had not acted on the matter.
“What he realised was that the police feared Terre’Blanche and no one wanted to face him.”
Tlouane said Mahlangu had “no clothes, no food and nowhere to go”, so he continued to work for Terre’Blanche.
The police did not tell him what to do and he did not know “because he was not a learned man”.
Mahlangu has changed his account of events several times, first saying he fought with Terre’Blanche over unpaid wages, but last week his lawyer argued that while they had fought, it was not over money.
Tlouane was cross-examining Captain Jan Louw, who had attended the crime scene, when he spoke about Mahlangu’s new claims.
During his cross examination, Louw was asked if he thought the murder of Terre’Blanche looked like a farm murder or an organised crime.
He testified it was a very brutal farm murder.
Louw also told the court that policeman had taken a video of the scene but the defence has not seen the video. They asked to see it if it is found.
The teenager’s other lawyer, Zola Majavu, slammed Louw for not mentioning in his initial crime scene statement that Terre’Blanche had semen on his genitals. Louw told this to the court on Wednesday morning but had not included it in his statement, which dealt with how the body was removed from the scene.
Majavu said the only reason Louw did not mention Terre’Blanche’s exposed genitals was to prevent embarrassment to the victim’s family. Louw denied this.
The pathologist was expected to give testimony on Wednesday afternoon.
For more on the life and times of the slain AWB leader, visit our special report.
Read more from Katharine Child
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