National 7.9.2016 12:43 pm

Alleged Panayiotou hitman dies in hospital

Jayde Panayiotou is pictured on the left. Pic: Facebook

Jayde Panayiotou is pictured on the left. Pic: Facebook

Questions have been raised over whether or not Vumazonke had been poisoned.

The alleged triggerman accused of shooting and killing Jayde Panayiotou passed away on Wednesday morning after being hospitalised for an unknown illness last month.

Earlier this week questions were raised over whether or not Vumazonke had been poisoned. It further emerged Vumazonke had slipped into a coma and was under police guard at Livingstone Hospital.

Vumazonke’s lawyers previously said he had become violently ill while in prison. His lawyers indicated that at times he was assisted by co-accused Sinethemba Nenembe, who shared a cell with him.

Prosecutor Marius Stander earlier told the court that a medical certificate had not been issued because the doctor could not indicate what exactly was wrong with the alleged hitman. Stander said the State was awaiting a toxicology report.

Vumazonke’s lawyer Michelle Blignaut, who was at Livingstone Hospital, told the African News Agency (ANA) that her client had passed away and that she had informed family members.

Christopher  is accused of masterminding the abduction and murder of his schoolteacher wife, Jayde, in April last year.

The State alleges he paid a bouncer from his Infinity nightclub, Luthando Siyoni, to hire hitman Sizwezakhe Vumazonke to kidnap and kill Jayde.

Siyoni has since turned State witness.

Cellphone plotting showed that a fifth accused, Zolani Sibeko, was with Sinethemba Nenembe and Vumazonke outside Jayde’s Stellen Glenn Complex in Kabega Park just five days before she was abducted.

The State alleges Jayde was forced into the boot of a hired vehicle, taken to a remote area in Kwanobhule and murdered.

A pretrial conference is set to get under way on September 15.

– African News Agency (ANA)

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