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Lover’s phone used 17 times to contact suspected Panayiotou hitman

22 June 2017 - 06:45 By Kathryn Kimberley
Christopher Panayiotou and advocate Terry Price with Alwyn Griebenow. File photo.
Christopher Panayiotou and advocate Terry Price with Alwyn Griebenow. File photo.
Image: Gallo Images

The phone of murder accused Christopher Panayiotou's mistress was used 17 times to contact one of the men approached to carry out the alleged hit on his wife.

This was revealed by data analyst Thereza Botha in the Port Elizabeth High Court on Tuesday.

Botha said the handset of Panayiotou's cousin was also used to contact suspected triggerman Sizwezakhe Vumazonke prior to Jayde's murder.

Through her testimony, Botha tied up months of evidence using cellphone analysis which was corroborated by a vehicle-tracking system to connect the dots between Panayiotou and his coaccused.

Botha said Panayiotou was in regular contact with his former employee, Luthando Siyoni, who he allegedly asked to arrange his wife's murder.

It is alleged that Siyoni made contact with acquaintances saved on his phone such as "Trompie", "Happy Trigger" or "Sky" before giving the job to Vumazonke, who is now dead.

At one point, in February 2015, Siyoni sent a text message to Sky with a description of Jayde's car.

It is alleged that Vumazonke recruited Sinethemba Nemembe to help him carry out the kidnapping and murder in 2015.

Referring to the GPS tracker attached to the vehicle Vumazonke used to carry out the alleged hit, she said the car left his residence in KwaNobuhle at 5.24am.

She said he then travelled to the residence of co-accused Nemembe. At 6.03am the car reached the entrance of Jayde's complex.

Botha also said the handset of Panayiotou's mistress, Chanelle Coutts, communicated with Trompie 17 times between September and October 2014.

According to Botha, it could not have been Panayiotou using Coutts's phone as his handset registered in a different area.

Botha said Panayiotou and Coutts were in regular contact, except when Panayiotou was with Jayde in Uitenhage.

When Jayde was away, however, like in September 2014, Coutts's phone registered with the Linton Grange tower in the vicinity of the couple's Stellen Glen complex.

"Coutts's handset seemed to have spent nights in the vicinity of the residence of the deceased when the deceased was away," Botha told the court.

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