Bristol

Shrien Dewani 'agreed price for wife murder'

Shrien Dewani and Anni Dewani Image copyright PA
Image caption Shrien and Anni Dewani were on honeymoon in Cape Town in November 2010 when she was killed

British businessman Shrien Dewani agreed to pay about £1,300 to a hitman for the murder of his wife Anni in South Africa, a court has been told.

On the second day of the trial in Cape Town, Mziwamadoda Qwabe said he was asked to make it look like a hijacking.

Mr Dewani, 34, from Bristol, denies murdering his wife Anni, 28, on their honeymoon in 2010.

The couple were held at gunpoint while being driven in a taxi through Gugulethu township near Cape Town.

Qwabe told the Western Cape High Court that taxi driver Zola Tonga had told him "there was a husband who wanted his wife to be killed".

Mr Dewani faces five charges, including murder and lying about the circumstances of Swedish national Anni's death.

Image copyright AP
Image caption Mziwamadoda Qwabe has already been sentenced to 25 years in prison for the murder of Anni Dewani

Qwabe, from Cape Town, was sentenced to 25 years in prison in 2012 for the murder of Anni Dewani.

Prosecutors claim Mr Dewani conspired with him, and other Cape Town residents Zola Tongo and Xolile Mngeni.

Qwabe, 29, told the court Tongo phoned him and said he had a job that needed to be done - that someone needed to be killed.

He said Tongo agreed to meet him the next day to discuss the murder, and a price of 15,000 rand (about £1,330 at the exchange rate at the time) was agreed.

The pair then arranged to meet up with Tongo's taxi for the attack, during which Mr Dewani's phone would also be taken.

He told the court the money was due to be left in a "cubby hole" in the vehicle which would later be split before the pair spent an evening "socialising".

Qwabe was asked if there was any discussion about a weapon. He said: "I knew there would be a firearm involved."

He told the court Tongo called him later and told him the route the taxi would take on the evening of 13 November 2010.

Image copyright AP
Image caption Shrien Dewani, who is on trial in South Africa, denies any involvement in his wife's death

Describing the carjacking, Qwabe said: "[Mngeni] had the gun. As it [Tongo's car] approached I got into the driver's side.

"[Mngeni] got into the passenger side and Zola got into the back. I saw in the (rear view) window a guy and behind me was a lady," he said.

"I ordered Zola to get out of the car. He told me the money was in a pouch behind the front passenger door.

"I stopped the vehicle, I asked the husband to get out of the car.

"The husband was now out of the vehicle and I drove on."

Qwabe told the court he was behind the wheel when Anni was fatally wounded.

Image caption Anni Dewani was killed in the back of a taxi in South Africa

He said he was concentrating on the road at the moment Mngeni killed her.

"I heard a gun shot. [Mngeni] said 'I shot the lady'.

"I pulled over on to the pavement and stopped the car. I saw she [Anni] was on the back seat of the car."

Qwabe said he found the bullet casing then threw his gloves away.

He told the court 10,000 rand was in the pouch and 4,000 rand was seized from "the husband".

Qwabe admitted he had lied in court at a bail hearing before he admitted his guilt over the murder.

Francois van Zyl, representing Dewani, said: "At that bail hearing you testified under oath, you pleaded not guilty because you said you had an alibi. Is that a lie?"

Image copyright EPA
Image caption Anni Dewani's father, Vinod Hindocha, was among family members to attend the trial in Cape Town

Qwabe replied: "My lawyer at the time told me to plead not guilty."

Mr van Zyl said: "I repeat the question. Was that a lie under oath?"

Qwabe answered: "Yes."

The court was told there had been no conversations with Tongo about how Anni would be killed, only that it had to look like a hijacking.

Mr van Zyl asked: "You never had a discussion about how this woman was going to be killed?"

Qwabe answered: "No, sir."

He told the court it was not decided who would strike the fatal blow, what weapon would be used, or where the killing would take place.

On Monday Mr Dewani told the court in a written statement that his "whole world came crashing down" when his wife was found killed.

He also revealed to the court that he is bisexual.

A record of agreed facts in the case, released by the court on Wednesday, showed he had been browsing same-sex dating websites during the honeymoon and within days of his wife's death.

It shows he was logged into the Gaydar website while waiting with his wife for a connecting flight to Cape Town, and three times between November 15 and November 16, He also logged into the Recon website twice.

The trial was adjourned until Thursday.

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