Dewani arrives at court for trial

Dewani arrives at court for trial

British millionaire Shrien Dewani has arrived in court to stand trial accused of murdering his wife on their honeymoon.

The 34-year-old denies plotting to kill new wife Anni on their luxury getaway to Cape Town in November 2010, as they took a cab ride through a township.

The care home owner, from Weston-on-Trym near Bristol, has always denied paying three men to kill Anni, days after their lavish £200,000 wedding in Mumbai.

Dewani arrived at the court at around 6.30am local time, having been treated at the Valkenberg Hospital on the outskirts of Cape Town following his extradition from the UK.

In scenes similar to that of the recent trial of athlete Oscar Pistorius in Pretoria, media from across the globe battled for a vantage point.

The case is front page news in South Africa, with local paper The New Age running a splash headline “Anni’s family demand answers”, following a press conference with the victim’s father, Vinod Hindocha, and uncle, Ashok Hindocha, last night.

Vinod Hindocha said he wanted answers from his estranged son-in-law – with whom he has not spoken since Dewani became a murder suspect in the days after the attack.

He said: “Now that I’m here, all I ask for is the full story and justice.

“I am confident that South Africa will conduct a fair and open trial of Shrien Dewani.”

Mr Hindocha said he was grateful for the support of people from around the world, particularly in the UK and South Africa. He added: “Now it’s up to the South African legal system to obtain the information about how my little girl died.”

Dewani was extradited from the UK to face trial charged with conspiracy to commit kidnapping, robbery with aggravating circumstances, murder, kidnapping, and defeating the ends of justice.

Before his extradition, and between months of court hearings, Dewani was detained in a hospital in Britain for depression and post-traumatic stress disorder.

Up to seven members of Anni’s family are due to attend various stages of the hearing, including her mother, Nilam Hindocha, having recently undergone radiotherapy for cancer.

Prosecutors argue that Dewani conspired with Cape Town residents Zola Tongo, Mziwamadoda Qwabe and Xolile Mngeni to kill his wife.

Taxi driver Tongo, Qwabe and Mngeni are already serving jail terms in connection with the murder.

Dewani claimed he and his wife were kidnapped at gunpoint as they drove through Gugulethu in Cape Town in a taxi.

Dewani was released unharmed, but his wife’s body was found in the abandoned car the next day. She had been shot.

The trial, before judge Jeanette Traverso, is expected to offer harrowing detail on the circumstances surrounding Mrs Dewani’s death.

Members of the victim’s family have travelled from Sweden, where she was raised, to attend the hearing, which is expected to last for around two months.

It is not yet known whether Dewani will be giving evidence in his defence.

The case will not follow that of decorated South African athlete Pistorius, whose recent televised murder trial was seen as something of a landmark moment for the country’s judicial system.

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