Parents' murder was 'the will of God'

28 October 2011 - 02:23 By NIVASHNI NAIR

Hardus Lotter believed it was "right" to kill his parents - because it was God's will, he has told the Durban High Court.

Hardus, his sister Nicolette and her former boyfriend, Mathew Naidoo, are on trial for the murder of Johan and Riekie Lotter at their Westville, Durban, home in July 2008.

The state alleges that Naidoo and the Lotter siblings planned the double murder for a share of the inheritance.

Prosecutor Rea Mina said the brother and sister also wanted their parents dead so that Naidoo could live with them "unhindered".

Hardus yesterday told the court that he had met Naidoo in 2007 when his sister had introduced him to the family.

After months of getting "closer and closer", Naidoo allegedly began talking in "strange" voices and told Hardus that God spoke through him and that he was the son of God.

Hardus testified that Naidoo had told him that his father, Johan, worshipped Satan, and had tried to turn him against his parents.

"He told me my father was an adulterer, that he raped my sister, Nicolette, and my other sister, who is in Cape Town.

"He said my father didn't want us to have a good life . Because he was a worshipper of Satan, he wanted us to be miserable because his life was miserable."

Hardus said Naidoo "knew things that no one else could have known".

"When my mother and sister Nicolette used to fight, I prayed to God to send someone to help us. He [Naidoo] confirmed that prayer, and he wouldn't have known if he didn't have special powers."

Hardus had believed Naidoo was sent by God because the relationship between his mother and Nicolette had improved with Naidoo's presence.

His mother had got on well with Naidoo when they first met, but his father had not liked him, Hardus said.

"He didn't like him because we are from a conservative culture and are not accustomed to people from our family dating or marrying people from other races or cultures," he said.

A month before the double murder, Naidoo had told Hardus that God wanted his parents dead and that he (Naidoo) would send threatening cellphone SMS messages to the father, Hardus said.

Naidoo had also told Hardus to write threatening letters, which were posted to the parents.

The letters, in which it was claimed that two men intended harming the couple, were meant to "confuse" the police, Hardus said.

The first two attempts to kill Johan Lotter failed when he did not drink the whisky that his children had spiked with sap from a poisonous plant and 90%-pure alcohol.

"Two days before the incident, Naidoo said it was the will of God that my parents were killed, and that he got this revelation from God himself.

"He said it was a direct instruction from God and proceeded planning it because my sister and I could not help because we did not have the minds to think up things like this," Hardus testified.

The final plan, he said, was to shock his parents with a stun gun then tie them up and inject air into their veins to induce heart attacks.

Hardus will today testify about how his parents were eventually killed.

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