Judge Rules Alleged Confession of Accused 2 in Senzo Meyiwa Murder Trial Inadmissible
Judge Ratha Mokgoatlheng ruled that the audio recording of the alleged confession made by accused 2, Bongani Ntanzi, is inadmissible as evidence.
The judge in the Senzo Meyiwa murder trial has ruled that the alleged confession of accused 2 Bongani Ntanzi recorded by magistrate Vivienne Cronje is inadmissible as evidence.
Judge Ratha Mokgoatlheng made the ruling on Friday, 20 October after hearing arguments from both the State and defence on Thursday.
The State previously indicated that it will not use the recording and has since made a U-turn as it wants the recording to be submitted as evidence in the trial-within-a-trial which looks into the admissibility of the confessions made by accused 1 Muzikawukhulelwa Sibiya and Bongani Ntanzi.
Defence lawyers insisted that Ntanzi’s rights were infringed and that he should have been informed that he was being recorded and that the audio will be used against him in court.
Delivering the judgement, Mokgoatlheng said taking into account that Ntanzi’s rights were infringed it would not be in the interest of justice for the audio recording to form part of the evidence.
Five men are on trial at the Gauteng High Court in Pretoria for the murder of the soccer star, Muzikawukhulelwa Sibiya, Bongani Ntanzi, Mthobisi Prince Mncube, Mthokoziseni Maphisa and Fisokuhle Nkani Ntuli.
They face charges of premeditated murder, attempted murder, robbery with aggravated circumstances, possession of firearms without a licence and possession of ammunition.
All five men pleaded not guilty as the trial has started afresh under Judge Ratha Mokgoatlheng.
The judge’s ruling is a significant setback for the prosecution, as it deprives them of a key piece of evidence.
It remains to be seen how the trial will proceed without the recording.