November 26 2009 at 11:31AM
By Bonile Ngqiyaza
Tears flowed freely at the Johannesburg High Court on Wednesday as a husband described the loss and devastation the murder of his wife had wreaked on him and his family.
There were sniffles and tears from relatives as hearing-impaired businessman Jerome Lithins testified in aggravation of sentence of three men found guilty of the slaying of his wife at home in December 2006.
An emotional Lithins told the court that the couple had been two months short of celebrating their wedding anniversary when his wife was shot and killed.
Judge Lucy Mailula ruled on Tuesday that Alfred Phahla, Swana Rusty Lekoko and David Maditsi had acted in concert and in pursuance of a common goal when they robbed the Paulshof family.
The three first held hostage the domestic worker and two visitors for 11 hours in the maid's room before attacking Lithins and his son Jesse outside their Empangeni Road home early in the morning in 2006. They shot dead Lithins's wife Patricia before escaping with about R11 000 in cash.
Lithins said he had had to close his business as a result of the trauma and his son had subsequently suffered stress and depression, and after seven months had dropped out of a post-matriculation course.
The court has adjourned until December 7.
This breaking news flash was supplied exclusively to iol.co.za by the news desk at our sister title The Star.