Prominent defence advocate Barry Roux will lead the appeal process of two Coligny men convicted of killing a teenager for stealing sunflower seeds, Afriforum said on Monday.
“Advocate Barry Roux has indicated that he will handle the appeal process. The appeal process can only start only after sentencing,” said CEO Kallie Kriel.
Kriel said the defence legal team had consulted with Roux.
Pieter Doorewaard, 27, and Phillip Schutte, 34, have been found guilty of killing Matlhomola Mosweu of Scotland informal settlement in Coligny on April 20, 2017.
They claimed Mosweu jumped out of a moving van, while they were taking him to the police station in Coligny after they found him stealing sunflower seeds at their employer’s farm.
The court had rejected their version and accepted the testimony of the sole eyewitness of the incident, Bonakele Pakisi.
Pakisi testified that he saw Mosweu being thrown out of a moving van.
Kriel said they would lodge an appeal following reports that Pakisi admitted he had lied to the court to a priest. His confession was allegedly recorded.
Rapport revealed last Sunday it had heard a recording in which Bonakele Pakisi said he hadn’t been telling the truth when he testified that farmworkers Pieter Doorewaard, 27, and Phillip Schutte, 34, had murdered 16-year-old Matlhomola Moshoeu in April 2017.
The next day, however, Pakisi told the Sowetan he was actually forced to change his testimony and that the recording was allegedly gained through intimidation by being shown a firearm and being forced to read an already prepared statement.
The North West High Court heard on Monday that the two men convicted of killing Matlhomola Mosweu in Coligny after he stole sunflower seeds should be sentenced to life imprisonment.
Community leader Stan Mnyakama told the court: “The parents of the accused could visit them in prison, they can talk to them and hug them, but for the Mosweu’s family, they will never talk to their son. If it was in the past they (the accused) deserved hang paal [death sentence] but now a life sentence will be an appropriate sentence.”
He said the community was deeply hurt by the death of Mosweu.
“The community was hurt. This incident was reported to me on Sunday, that a boy was killed on Thursday, and there has not been any arrest. I immediately called detective Seponkane to attend to the case.”
Mynakama, who is a school principal, told the court that irate community members even went to schools and took pupils out of class.
He said he went to town and saw farmers driving into town with bakkies, stopping at street corners.
“I was afraid that if one person could be shot by one of the farmers, the town would be destroyed.”
He said prior to the death of Mosweu, blacks and whites were tolerating each other but now they were drifting apart.