Van Breda defence squares off with cop

Hendri van Breda appears in the High Court in Cape Town
File picture: Esa Alexander

He claimed he was freezing cold‚ was interrogated by police‚ and was told he was talking “bullshit” right from the get-go.

But the sergeant who took down the statement from Henri van Breda on the day his family was murdered denied this in the High Court in Cape Town on Monday as he testified for the state.

Van Breda is in the dock for the murder of his father Martin‚ mother Teresa‚ and brother Rudi. He also stands accused of the attempted murder of his sister Marli.

Piet Botha‚ for the defence‚ claimed that Van Breda was told by police: “We have given Marli something and she is wide awake and telling us everything that happened.”

Sergeant Clinton Malan said this was not true at all‚ and that nobody had made that claim about Marli.

Day 19 of the trial — which is a “trial-within-a-trial” to see if the statement he made to police on 27 January 2015 is admissible — has been just as heated as the main trial itself.

Botha said: “Colonel Deon Beneke‚ who questioned [my] client in your presence‚ made suggestions to my client.”

Botha argued that Beneke was “leading” Van Breda as he gave his statement.

Malan‚ however‚ said: “Henri gave all the details himself.”

He also said his client was wearing “only a pair of boxer shorts with the air con turned up high”‚ and that he wasn’t informed of his right to legal representation or to remain silent.

“We did not think that necessary‚” Malan said‚ “as at that stage he was a victim and a witness‚ not a suspect.”

He said Van Breda by then had warmer clothes on — long pants and a t-shirt — and that there was no air con in the office and that the room was not cold.

The case continues.

– TMG Digital/TimesLIVE

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