16 May 2018

South Africa: Panayiotou Back in Court to Seek Leave to Appeal

Christopher Panayiotou is set to seek leave to appeal his murder conviction in the Eastern Cape High Court on Wednesday.

Panayiotou was found guilty of murder late in 2017 and received a life sentence for his role in orchestrating the killing of his wife, Jade.

His co-accused, Sinethemba Nenembe and Zolani Sibeko, were sentenced in the Eastern Cape High Court in Port Elizabeth also in 2017.

Nenembe was sentenced to life for murder and an additional 15 years for robbery. Sibeko, who was found guilty of conspiracy to commit murder, was sentenced to 15 years.

In passing sentence, Judge Dayalin Chetty said that the conspiracy Christopher had hatched was at the epicentre of the murder.

He said the money Christopher provided was, no doubt, the catalyst for Nenembe and Sibeko's involvement.

"In my judgment, I described the crime as audacious because it, in truth, defies belief," he said.

Chetty said there was testimony before the court that Christopher, Jayde's father and her father-in-law, had all cried at the scene where Jayde's body had been found.

"I have no doubt that the sight of Jayde's lifeless body reduced both her father and father-in-law to tears but, assuming that [Christopher] in fact shed a tear, it could only, given his orchestration of Jayde's death, have been crocodile tears."


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