Double murder convict Nicodemus parts ways with lawyer

06 Aug 2019 16:10pm
WINDHOEK, 06 AUG (NAMPA) - Lukas Nicodemus, who was on Tuesday found guilty of killing two women and burning their bodies in the capital in January 2016, was left without legal representation following the withdrawal of his State-funded defence lawyer, Vernon Lutibezi.
Lutibezi Tuesday morning withdrew from representing Nicodemus after the two men could not find common ground on how to further proceed with the case.
The court has now directed the Ministry of Justice’s Directorate of Legal Aid to instruct and appoint another lawyer to defend Nicodemus.
The matter was on Tuesday postponed to Wednesday to allow the directorate time to find another lawyer to represent him.
Earlier this year another State-funded defence lawyer, Mbanga Siyomuinji, also withdrew from representing Nicodemus for similar reasons.
Nicodemus, 49, parted ways with Lutibezi a few minutes after he was found guilty for the deaths of Windhoek residents Johanie Naruses, 29, and Clemensia de Wee, 23, in a judgement handed down by Judge Christie Liebenberg.
On the two charges of murder, he was found guilty with direct intent to kill both women.
Nicodemus was also found guilty as charged on a third count of defeating the course of justice when he burned and dumped the victims’ bodies at a dumpsite in the Pionierspark residential area during the period of 06 and 07 January 2016.
He was, however, not found guilty and discharged on the fourth count of having failed to lock away his firearm or safekeeping his firearm in a proper safe after the prosecution could not prove this charge beyond reasonable doubts through the presentation of State witnesses' evidence.
The court also rejected as false and after-thoughts Nicodemus' defence evidence that a certain Bennie was the real person who is responsible for the deaths of the two women.
At the beginning of the trial in 2018, Nicodemus denied committing the brutal offences and told the court he had no knowledge of the incident.
The two victims’ partially burnt bodies were discovered at a dumpsite near Pionierspark by a security guard who was working in the area during the period of 06 and 07 January 2016.
Nicodemus’ black sedan was later found by police abandoned at an unnamed location.
The car was used in the transportation of the bodies of the two women as police found bloodstains in it.
The victims’ remains were burned in an attempt to conceal the crime.
He remains in police custody at the Windhoek Central Correctional Facility’s trial-awaiting section until his next court appearance on Wednesday.