1 minute read
15 Aug 2013
9:52 am

Maqubela charge changes to be declined

A Western Cape High Court judge is expected to rule on Thursday whether to amend murder and forgery charges against the widow of acting judge Patrick Maqubela.

The pair had been charged with stock theft. Photo: Supplied

On Tuesday, Marius Broeksma, representing Thandi Maqubela, said her defence would have been conducted differently had the charges been changed before the trial.

Last month, Judge John Murphy indicated he intended making changes to the charges on the indictment.

On the murder charge, he wanted to extend the cause of death by adding “or means unknown” to “suffocation with plastic”.

Regarding Thandi Maqubela’s alleged forgery of her husband’s will, he wanted to amend the charge from “making of the signature” to “making of the will”.

Broeksma said the current charges were neither invalid nor defective and that the amendment to the murder charge made an otherwise “fairly specific charge” a vague one.

Maqubela was prejudiced in that she could no longer ask for further particulars to make the scope of the charge clearer.

Maqubela and her co-accused Vela Mabena have pleaded not guilty to suffocating her husband, acting judge Patrick Maqubela, with cling-wrap in his Sea Point, Cape Town, apartment on June 5, 2009.

Thandi Maqubela has also pleaded not guilty to forging her husband’s signature on his will, and then fraudulently presenting it at the Johannesburg office of the Master of the High Court.