Defence lawyer says alleged gunman was not around when Meyiwa was shot

Thulani Mngomezulu cross-examining cellphone data analyst Gideon Gouws

23 May 2024 - 20:17
By Shonisani Tshikalange
The accused in the Senzo Meyiwa trial.
Image: Thulani Mbele JB8A3363 The accused in the Senzo Meyiwa trial.

A defence lawyer in the Senzo Meyiwa murder trial has contended that the suspected gunman, Mthobisi Mncube, was not in Vosloorus when the football star was gunned down in October 2014.

Thulani Mngomezulu, representing another of the accused, Muzikawukhulelwa Sibiya, claimed that at the hour of Meyiwa's murder, Mncube's phone was pinging in locations outside Vosloorus.

Mngomezulu made these submissions as he continued the cross-examination of state witness and cellphone data analyst Gideon Gouws on Thursday in the high court in Pretoria.

“If it (the cellphone) was not in Vosloorus on the day Meyiwa was killed and this cellphone is associated with accused three (Mncube), who else do you think may have been in possession of it?” he said.

Mngomezulu said he would argue at a later stage that the evidence Gouws presented before the court from 2018 to 2021 is irrelevant.

He put it to Gouws that there was no communication that he placed on record — between the accused — that has an element of a particular offence.

“There is no sms or communication that can prove to this court that these accused knew each other for the wrong purposes, especially in relation to the death of Meyiwa. You cannot prove a guilty mind in the communications between the accused. You can't even prove the positive act in the communication of these five accused,” Mngomezulu said.

He said his client, Sibiya was also not in Vosloorus on the day Meyiwa was killed and further submitted that Sibiya did not know Mncube back then  and neither was there communication between them.

Despite evidence being led of communications among the accused, Ntanzi through his lawyer, Sipho Ramosepele, has denied knowing his co-accused Mncube, Sibiya‚ Bongani Sandiso Ntanzi, Mthokoziseni Ziphozonke Maphisa and Fisokuhle Nkani Ntuli.

On Wednesday, Gouws told the court that Ntanzi had been in cellphone contact with Ntuli and visa versa while he was detained.

A state witness has already testified that a cellphone was confiscated from Ntanzi who was detained in February 2021, months after he was arrested.

The trial continues on Friday.