- The man accused of raping and murdering eight-year-old Tazne van Wyk will bring two more witnesses to court.
- The case was postponed to Monday, providing some respite from the devastating testimony heard in court.
- The accused has pleaded not guilty to all the charges against him, which include incest, and the severe thrashing of his stepchildren.
Two more witnesses will testify in the trial of the man accused of murdering Tazne van Wyk in February 2020 and raping and assaulting some of his relatives.
This comes after the State finished its cross-examination of the accused on Tuesday.
He may not be named to protect the identity of his family, but he has testified that he did not rape or kill Tazne, or saw her left hand off.
He also denied the rape charges that came to the fore after his arrest in connection with Tazne’s disappearance, and the charges of assaulting some of his stepchildren through severe thrashings.
He has accused witnesses of lying about him and said the three minors accused him of sexual assault so they could be on TV.
The testimony has been particularly difficult as sensitive details of the alleged rape of his daughter, and of the child his daughter gave birth to, were thoroughly examined.
To every charge – except the one that he absconded from parole – he insists people are lying about him.
He has also explained inconsistencies in his testimony as a side effect of being beaten up when arrested and beaten up by fellow detainees in a police truck on his way to his trial. He says these alleged assaults have made him forgetful.
Family members of Tazne van Wyk are seen inside the Goodwood Magistrate’s Court.
Gallo Images Brenton Geach, Gallo Images
At times he appears as a frail man, barely audible as he mumbles, and at other times his thick neck and large chest stand out as he vehemently denies an allegation, speaking over the interpreter.
Little is known about his background besides the information he shared in an appeal he lodged over the culpable homicide of one of his sons.
He is understood to come from a family of eight and was raised by a single mother in an area characterised by poverty and drugs.
He has told the court that he cannot read or write because he finished school in grades 7 or 8.
To use a cellphone, other people put numbers in for him, and he has a system where he enters the first letter of their name on the cellphone keyboard, and their number comes up.
He has also moved around the country a lot, with his past jobs including carpentry, refuse removal, a butcher’s assistant and a nightclub bouncer.
He had lived across the road from Tazne for about a week before she disappeared.
He testified that a taxi with four foreigners stopped and asked him for directions. He said that Little Tazne appeared next to him and got in when she heard the occupants would pay for directions. This taxi took them from Ravensmead to Malawi Camp at the airport, to Parow, then Paarl and dropped them on the N1 outside Worcester.
He said the taxi then came back for them, and he believes they murdered Tazne when they carried her off into bushes near a river.
Her body was found in a water pipe on the side of the N1 near Worcester. At first, he said he saw the four people put her there but later denied that they took him with them to dispose of her body.
He never reported their apparent kidnapping by the four foreigners because he said he did not trust the police.
The State is working off cellphone records of his movements as a base from which to launch its questions.
He was lured to Cradock by his ex-wife with the promise of R8 000 she said she stole from her husband and “a good time”. Police arrested him when he arrived in the Eastern Cape town.