South African rape and murder suspect gets new lawyer

31 Aug 2017 14:40pm
WINDHOEK, 31 AUG (NAMPA) - A South African man accused of raping and murdering a 56-year-old woman in Windhoek during June 2014, now has new legal representation.
On 17 July 2017, Wilhelm Wimpie Derick Februarie, 37, parted ways with State-funded defence lawyer Hipura Ujaha a few minutes before his alleged rape and murder trial was scheduled to kick-off before High Court Judge Naomi Shivute.
Februarie told the court at the time he decided to terminate Ujaha’s services because he felt the lawyer was no longer fully committed to the defence of his case.
The South African man made another appearance during a pre-trial conference of case management review on Thursday morning when he was informed that the Justice Ministry's Directorate of Legal Aid has now appointed and instructed Mbanga Siyomuinji to take over from Ujaha.
Februarie's rape and murder case was, thereafter, remanded until 02 April 2018 for the purpose of pleading to the charges levelled against him by the State.
His trial is set down to run until 20 July 2018, as per agreement reached between State Advocate Salomon Kanyemba and the accused' s defence lawyer Siyomuinji in court today.
The prosecution alleges the South African raped and murdered Windhoek resident, Dinah Diedericks, at her home in Windhoek West on the evening of 21 June 2014.
The Namibian Police Force (NamPol) arrested Februarie a day after Diedericks was found dead outside her home.
According to NamPol, Diedericks was killed by way of strangulation and Februarie was the last person seen with her. Mobile phone records indicate that Februarie was in the vicinity of Windhoek West from about 20h00 to 23h00 that evening.
He remains in custody at the Windhoek Central Correctional Facility since his arrest, with no option to post bail until his next court appearance next year.