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Bikers' killer still unsentenced

2013-03-14 14:09

CASE POSTPONED UNTIL APRIL: Indi Himalindi Chiyabu, has been found guilty on two counts of culpable homicide for crashing into three motorcyclists with his Hummer, killing two of them.

Pretoria - The sentencing hearing against a Hummer driver found guilty of culpable homicide after crashing into three motorcyclists, killing two and injuring one, was postponed in the Pretoria North Regional Court on March 14 2013.

Magistrate Ben van Schalkwyk postponed the case until April 22 2013 after a request by lawyer Makhi Nogaga, representing Zambian national Indi Himalindi Chiyabu (31). Newly appointed Nogaga told the court he needed time to get transcripts of previous court sessions and had yet to be  be fully briefed on his client's argument in the sentencing process.

LAWYER 'INCAPACITATED'

In February 2013 the court found Chiyabu guilty of two charges of culpable homicide, leaving the scene of an accident and failing to report it. On March 14 the court was scheduled to hear argument in mitigation or aggravation of Chiyabu's sentence. Nogaga said he was "incapacitated" and would need time to prepare.

He said the defence received a probation report on March 14.

State prosecutor Tania Carstens said she understood the defence's position and did not oppose the request for a postponement. "We have a lot of families and friends concerned with this matter. It is important that we finalise this matter, even for the accused. We also know that the matter has attracted a lot of media attention."

Many members of the Christian Motorcyclists' Association SA were in the packed courtroom.

FAMILIES DEVASTATED

In October 2010 Chiyabu crashed into the motorcyclists while driving on Rachel de Beer Road in Pretoria. The Hummer caught fire and Chiyabu fled. He handed himself over to police a few days later.

Two of the motorcycles also burned after the collision.

Pieter Coetzee and JP Kruger, members of the Christian Motorcyclists' Association SA, died at the scene. Coetzee's son Pieter lost a leg because of the accident.

Schalkwyk said during an earlier hearing that the motorcyclists could not have avoided the Hummer and Chiyabu was entirely responsible for the crash.
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