12 Aug 2013 08:40
WINDHOEK, 12 AUG (NAMPA) - A ruling on the admissibility of a confession and other self-incriminating statements made by a retired school teacher who stands accused of murdering his wife in 2009 at Keetmanshoop in the !Karas Region, will be handed down in the High Court here this coming Friday.
The 61-year-old David de Jay denied having made the confession and other self-incriminating statements, claiming he was forced by the police officers to do so.
High Court Judge Alfred Siboleka, who had listened to the evidence during a trial-within-a-trial, will give his ruling this week on whether or not a letter which contained the alleged confession and statements made by De Jay could be used as evidence in the main trial.
In the matter, De Jay stands accused of murdering his wife, Tina de Jay, 56, near Seeheim, southwest of Keetmanshoop on 13 February 2009.
The victim was stabbed at least six times with a knife, and De Jay claims unknown people caused the death of his wife during a robbery.
De Jay earlier pleaded not guilty to the count of murder and defeating or obstructing the course of justice, or attempting to do so.
His State-appointed defence lawyer, Boris Isaacks had objected to the alleged confession, related self-incriminating evidence and the letter written by his client to be used as evidence in the main trial.
According to earlier reports carried by the daily 'New Era' newspaper during the presentation of the evidence in a trial-within-trial, De Jay's defence lawyer claimed that his client wrote the letter under alleged coercive circumstances involving assaults and threats by police officers.
The court heard that De Jay allegedly wrote the letter five days after his arrest, and also confessed before a magistrate in Keetmanshoop on 11 March 2009.
Meanwhile, Deputy Police Commissioner Sydney Philander testified that De Jay came to see him after making a request to that effect, and asked Philander for a pen and a paper to write a letter.
He was a police regional crimes coordinator in the Karas Region at the time.
Philander told the court that De Jay said he wanted to make a confession in front of a magistrate.
The accused was then ordered to fill in a form, informing him about his legal rights.
However, the accused is now claiming that he was forced into writing the said confession.
De Jay also testified that unknown police officers handcuffed and blindfolded him at midnight on 17 February 2009, and beat him up.
The former school teacher further testified that the same officers told him what to write when he was to confess the following day.
The prosecutions representative, State Advocate Palmer Khumalo, wants the alleged confession made by De Jay to be used as evidence in the main trial.