11 July 2018

South Africa: Couple Appear in Court After Two Girls Burn to Death While Home Alone

The mother of two girls who burnt to death after being left home alone in Colorado Park, Cape Town, was on Wednesday granted R500 bail in the Mitchells Plain Magistrate's Court, the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) said.

NPA spokesperson Eric Ntabazalila said that it did not oppose Tashleema Brandt's bail application as there were no grounds to keep her in custody.

The court postponed the bail application of her boyfriend, Cameron Adams, who is not the biological father of the girls, as it had to prioritise and finalise older applications on Wednesday.

The State intended to oppose his release on bail.

Ntabazalila said this was because he had a pending case of rape and might attempt to flee from the latest charges because the penalty was severe. He said the accused might also interfere with witnesses and that he might not be safe if released.

This was apparently because the community was "volatile".

Drug addiction

Adams first appeared in court for culpable homicide last month, when police were still looking for the girls' mother.

Zaythoon, 2, and 7-month-old Zaynura Brandt were alone at home when the fire started in the early hours of the morning in June.

The burnt out bed on which the remains of sister Zaythoon, 2, and seven-month-old Zaynura Brandt were found. (Tammy Petersen)

News24 previously reported that Adams struggled with addiction to tik (methamphetamine) and had allegedly stolen his mother's cellphone the night before the incident. She believed he had taken it to a nearby drug house as he told her he needed R30 to get it back.

Adams' mother, Eleanor, told News24 that Adams and his girlfriend had left in the early hours of the morning to go and retrieve the stolen goods, despite Eleanor telling her son not to leave as she was exhausted and didn't trust herself to stay awake.

By the time residents jumped in with hosepipes to quell the flames, it was too late for the girls.

Adams was arrested at the scene.

Source: News24

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