Will Christopher Panayiotou get some good news today?
Christopher Panayiotou will certainly be hoping for a positive outcome on Friday when his lawyers are again expected to meet with prosecutors in what could be his latest bid for bail.
The Port Elizabeth businessman has been in custody for over five months as he is accused of masterminding the ‘staged’ abduction and murder of his teacher wife, Jayde, in April. Friday’s meeting follows a similar meeting on Tuesday.
National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesman, Tsepo Ndwalaza, on Tuesday confirmed to ANA that State Prosecutor, Advocate Marius Stander, had met with Alwyn Griebenow and Advocate Terry Price SC, who are representing Panayiotou, in chambers with Magistrate Abigail Beeton.
“I was informed of the meeting. There is a bid to get bail. They [Panayiotou’s legal team] want to see the docket. I don’t know more than that. I know that they will be meeting again on Friday.”
Panayiotou will not make a court appearance and details of the planned meeting have not been disclosed - but it could be his third bid at bail if his legal counsel can get their hands on the docket and show that the State's claim of "strong case" against him is non-existent.
In July, Panayiotou failed in his second attempt to get bail in the Grahamstown High Court after complaining about the appalling conditions at St Albans Prison. The court upheld an earlier ruling by Port Elizabeth Magistrate, Abigail Beeton, that he was a flight risk.
High Court Judge Goosens said if released Panayiotou could also tamper with evidence and interfere with witnesses and that no exceptional reasons were found for bail.
READ THE FULL JUDGEMENT HERE.
Panayiyoutou's legal team had sought to prove that Magistrate Beeton erred in denying him bail.
At the hearing, Panayiotou offered a R200 000 bail bond, having previously said he only could afford R50 000.
The case has attracted much attention following several cases of people dying at their spouse's hand.
In October, the case against Panayiotou and his co-accused, Sizwezakhe Vumazonke, was again postponed by Magistrate Jan Steenkamp to 2 December.
Panayiotou’s legal counsel was, however, not happy saying for the period - over five months, that their client has been in custody, they were still to receive the State's docket.
He said that all attempts to get the docket had also failed.
The State said that investigations were still in progress.
Price said that they were now considering approaching the High Court to have the State release the docket.
On 29 October, Port Elizabeth police announced that they had made another breakthrough in the case and had arrested a third suspect.
The third suspect, 28 year-old Sinethemba Nenembe, was actually in police custody for another murder in Port Elizabeth, when police uncovered his link to the Panayiotou case.
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