henri van breda

@AJGMolyneaux / Twitter

Henri Van Breda trial: What are the defence’s closing arguments?

Day 65 is Van Breda’s last throw of the dice

henri van breda

@AJGMolyneaux / Twitter

Day 65 of the Henri Van Breda trial has been adjourned, as the defence took their closing arguments to Judge Siraj Desai at the Cape Town High Court on Tuesday.

The accused is fighting three murder charges, and one of attempted murder, after his parents and brother were killed with an axe, whereas his sister suffered severe head injuries but survived. He’s also on trial for defeating the ends of justice.

Advocate Piet Botha is representing Van Breda, and made the most of his opportunity to make sure his client leaves the courthouse as a free man. He only got two-thirds through his planned response to the prosecution’s arguments, but will complete his address to the judge tomorrow.

What defence does Henri Van Breda have?

1) The alarm tripped twice that night – Botha suggests this confirms the theory that intruders made it onto the property.

2) Security wasn’t “top-notch” at the Van Breda estate, the defence argued:

3) Van Breda’s lawyer also criticised the state laboratory that tested DNA samples, by emphasising that it was not accredited and could not be relied upon. He says they failed to prevent cross contamination in the lab, as they were unable to identify certain samples.

4) Questions were also raised on the nature of WhatsApp conversations shared by the Van Breda children:

Henri Van Breda Trial: Day 65

5) Blood stains on Van Breda’s heels don’t imply he killed anyone. It merely states he was in the house after the attacks happened, according to Piet Botha

6) When asked why a criminal would take the chance of carrying an axe with them to a home invasion, the defence simply blamed South African culture. The Advocate says that ‘gratuitous violence’ is rife in this country: