Saturday, 21 February 2009

Policeman tells of grisly discovery

Barbara Cole

February 19 2009 at 11:15AM

Murdered Ballito estate agent Lynne Hume's feet were still in flames in her burnt-out car when police constable Thulani Mkwanazi arrived at the scene, the Bloemfontein High Court heard on Wednesday.

She had electrical cord wrapped around her body.

It also ran down from the shoulders, he said, demonstrating what he had seen by criss-crossing his arms over his chest, then moving them downwards.

Hume, 47, was murdered on October 23, 2007, and Mkwanazi said he arrived at the crime scene at 10.30am on October 24 at Korskopf Farm, 10-15km between Kestell and Harrismith in the Free State.

It was 250m from the tarred road and as the landscape sloped, the scene was not visible from the road.

"I saw a burnt-out car... I got nearer and noticed a burnt-out corpse... the flames were still at the feet," he said.

He noticed two cartridges from a 9mm pistol, one 2.5m from the vehicle, the other 3m away.

He also noticed a petrol cap on the ground.

In the dock were IT consultant Muziwendoda Kunene, 45, of San Marina Seaward Estate, Ballito, and two men said to be his bodyguards: Mnikeni Khoza, 26, and Mphakamiseni Khumalo, 21, both of Msinga near Dundee.

They all deny kidnapping and murdering Hume as well as robbery with aggravating circumstances, three counts of fraud involving cheques.

Kunene, who is alleged to have given Hume a dud cheque for R637 350 to pay for three years' rent for a furnished flat at Sabuthi on the upmarket eco-estate of Simbithi in Salt Rock, is also denying fraud in connection with this.

Specialist pathologist, Professor Jan Botha with the Department of Health, who carried out the post-mortem, told the court that the cause of death was a gunshot wound to the head.

He had not received the facial bones, which would have included the teeth, and was thus unable to determine the exact site of the shot and if there was more than one.

A previous witness, Kunene's son, Msebenziwenkosi, who said he had been his father's driver to the murder scene, testified that he had heard two gunshots.

In his opinion, Hume was already dead when her body was destroyed by fire.

Botha received three separate portions of the remains. One small plastic bag contained charred arm and leg bone fragments and splinters as well as rib fragments.

Another contained ashes, debris and charred skull fragments with some attached brain tissue and a blood clot.

"A deformed copper jacket of a spent bullet was found within the brain tissue and two small fragments of molten lead were recovered from the debris."

The professor also received a charred portion of the trunk consisting of 10 vertebrae, the pelvic bones, leg, lungs, heart, liver, spleen, kidneys and uterus as well as a few loops of small intestine. The upper respiratory tract, stomach, pancreas, adrenal glands, colon and bladder were destroyed.

As the teeth were unavailable, no comparison with existing dental records could be undertaken.

His findings were consistent with Kunene, jnr's evidence that he had heard two gunshots and the car had been set alight.

Renetta Rossouw, the head of the Standard Bank's service centre in Bethlehem, gave evidence that the R637 350 cheque belonged to Multi-Consult Engineering and that Kunene was not a signatory.

Kunene's lawyer, Jan Nkhahle, told the court that the company previously operated under another name, Liebenberg and Stanger, and that Kunene had signing rights.

Rossouw said she could not dispute what Nkhahle was saying as she did not have records for it.

This article was originally published on page 1 of Daily News on February 19, 2009

Source:IOL
http://www.iol.co.za/index.php?set_id=1&click_id=15&art_id=vn20090219110009468C398954

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