PE double murder case postponed for sentencing

JUNE 3, 2015

Proceedings in the trial of Morne' van der Linden, 29, who is accused of  bludgeoning his wife's grandmother, Catherine Stofberg, 79, and her son, Kenneth Morar, 54, to death in August last year, have been postponed for sentencing at the Port Elizabeth High Court.

The State and Defence presented their closing arguments on Wednesday - a day after the trial began.

While pleading guilty to the murder charges, van der Linden maintains that his actions were not premeditated. He has also pleaded not guilty to an additional charge of robbery with aggravating circumstances, although he admitted to stealing Stofberg's cellphone.

Forensic pathologist, Dr Prudent Mgobo, testified on Tuesday about the injuries suffered by the deceased.

While he told the court that a hammer, which was found on the scene, was never used in both cases, he said that blunt force had caused the deaths of Stofberg and Morar.

The court also heard from Roxanne, van der Linden's wife, how he called her and told her; "I killed your grandmother and your uncle, and you are next b**ch." 

Early that evening, he had pleaded with her to take him back after Roxanne, a security guard, had obtained a restraining order aganist him two days before the murder. Roxanne was on night duty on the night of the murder.

She said van der Linden drank excessivley and abused her - and was also drunk on the night of the murder.