Panayiotou sentenced to life for murder of wife Jayde

24 November 2017 - 10:33
By Kathryn Kimberley and TimesLIVE
Christopher Panayiotou.
Image: Gallo Images / The Herald / Eugene Coetzee Christopher Panayiotou.

Judge Dayalin Chetty sentenced Christopher Panayiotou to life behind bars in the Port Elizabeth High Court on Friday for the murder of his wife, Jayde.

The Uitenhage teacher‚ 29‚ went missing from outside her home in Kabega Park‚ Port Elizabeth‚ on April 21 2015. Her body was found in KwaNobuhle the next day.

Chetty found her husband guilty of masterminding the murder.

In the judgment handed down on Panayiotou’s 31st birthday earlier this month‚ Judge Chetty convicted him of murder‚ while hitman Sinethemba Nemembe‚ 28‚ was found guilty of murder and robbery with aggravated circumstances‚ and Zolani Sibeko‚ 35‚ was found guilty of conspiracy to commit murder.

The breakthrough in unmasking the key figures in her murder came on April 27‚ when Captain Willie Mayi‚ the head of the South African Police Service’s vehicle hijacking team‚ received a call from an informer. This ultimately led him to middleman Luthando Siyoni.

It was the state’s case that Siyoni was intimately involved in securing Jayde’s assassin. However‚ when he entered the witness box‚ he claimed he was tortured and forced to implicate his former boss.