Marc Wadsworth - The-Latest - EXCLUSIVE
One of South Africa's most senior women military figures has revealed that because her country is tough on "gender crime" the British man suspected of arranging the murder of his wife while on holiday with her in Cape Town can expect no mercy.
Millionaire Bristol businessman Shrien Dewani is fighting being returned to South Africa from the UK to face justice. He is accused of masterminding the kidnapping and killing of his 28-year-old wife, Anni, on their honeymoon.
Lieutenant Colonel Mmamokgethi Morobane told The-Latest: "It is sad. If he really did that, he doesn't know how many hearts he broke here in this country. Moreover, the murder came during the period of 16 days of activism against violence to woman and children. If he is guilty, an example will be made of him and he will curse the day he chose South Africa for such an awful crime against a woman."
Dewani, 31, and his wife Anni, were caught on CCTV leaving a restaurant at Strand, a seaside resort 30 miles from Cape Town on November 13 2010, at 10.24pm. They were driven to a notorious township by Zola Tongo, 31, because, according to Dewani, his wife wanted to see "the real South Africa".
Around 35 minutes later Anni Dewani was in the hands of her killers after two gunmen ambushed the couple's taxi. Dewani and Tongo, who told all after confessing to murder to get a reduced sentence of 18 years in jail, escaped unharmed. Anni Dewani was shot dead and her blood-soaked body left in the abandoned taxi.
Tongo has accused Dewani of asking him to set up a hit disguised as a car-jacking for £1,400.
South African police have claimed that CCTV footage shows Dewani paying Tongo, 31, two days after the killing. Dewani said he was was paying his fare.
Morobane, who is based in South Africa's capital, Pretoria, said: "He (Dewani) should have chosen Mexico or any other country but not South Africa. We are serious about gender violence. What the hell was he thinking?"
She pointed out that "right now there are other allegations (of the unsolved "execution style" murder of a man in South Africa) in 2007 that he was involved in."
She said: "If it is right (that he was involved), he is a nasty sadist and must just prepare himself to grow old in prison. From what I've seen in the movies, older guys (especially those who grew old in prisons) are librarians and make friends with rats."
Colleague General Bheki Cele, South Africa's police commissioner, would never rest, warned Morobane, "until he cracks this one. He will fight until the end because right now South Africa is perceived as a haven of crime and he is determined to reverse that image".
Dewani, who denies any wrong doing, is currently at home in Westbury-on-Trym, Bristol, on £250,000 bail, preparing for an extradition hearing next month
Cele told South Africa's Sunday Tribune he was bitter the UK courts had given Dewani bail. He said he wanted the young widower speedily extradited to South Africa.
Cele insisted: “We have a powerful case against him and the guy just needs to come down and clear his name.
”Yes he got bail, but we are working on the extradition. We did not like this at all, but the authorities there have assured us that they have put an electronic tag on him to prevent him from fleeing. The court imposed strict conditions on him to curtail his movement. I’m adamant we have collected concrete information to stand in court.”
Dewani has hired spin doctor Max Clifford to run a PR campaign to win public support for him.
© Copyright The-Latest Ltd December 2010