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LISTEN TO AUDIO: Secret recording that incriminates Panayiotou finally heard in court

BY JESICA SLABBERT - JUNE 14, 2017
LISTEN TO AUDIO: Secret recording that incriminates Panayiotou finally heard in court

After the Defence team of disgraced Port Elizabeth businessman, Christopher Panayiotou, failed to prevent the admissibility of a secret video that incriminates Panayiotou in the murder of his wife, it was played in the Port Elizabeth High Court on Wednesday.

Panayiotou is accused of orchestrating the kidnapping and murder of his teacher wife, Jayde, in April 2015, along with co-accused Sinethemba Nenembe and Zolani Sibeko. All three have pled not guilty on all counts.

In the recording Panayiotou is seen getting into a car, that he was not aware had been electronically wired with video and audio recording equipment, to meet and talk to alleged middleman and former key State witeness, who has since been declared hostile, Luthando Siyoni.

The Defence had sought to prevent the video from coming out claiming that Siyoni was brutally assaulted by police, who were desparate to extract a confession - the same confession, which the defence argued was used to implicate Panayiotou.

On Monday Judge Dalayin Chetty ruled that the evidence was admissible and could be used, causing Defence Advocate Terry Price to accuse Chetty of not giving his client a fair trial, and claiming that he would make a formal application for Chetty to be recused.

On Wednesday, however, Price stated he would no longer make apply for Judge Chetty's recusal after consulting with his senior legal team.

Chilling recording

In the recording Siyoni, can be heard speaking to Panayiotou, saying that he needs help and needs to hide because the police are after him and questioning him adding that he was scared.

Panayiotou then asks what kind of questions, and if the police had asked about him and his involvement.

In the video, it appears that a bag of money is being handed to Siyoni in the back seat of the vehicle while Panayiotou is seated in the front passenger side.

Then in the video, Panayiotou can be heard making incriminating statements.

Siyoni tells him; “This has become like a murder thing now.” 

“Well that’s what I said to you. They made it into a murder instead of just a robbery outside the house!” response Panayiotou.

“Because of them they made it the way they did, they made it this big. But they got away hey.”

Panayiotou can then be heard telling Siyoni that he is going to have to report that Siyoni called him because he is currently being monitored by police. He then tells Siynoi that he needs to hide in Jeffrey’s Bay and keep quiet for a while.

He then tells Siyoni that he must also destroy his phone.

“I’m going to be okay as long as they never know about us Luthando. I only ever helped you with the gym,” said Panayitou.

“You need to be gone for a few months until this thing calms down.

“I’m all out now, this thing has cost me a lot of money and the cops are also looking at me.

“These boys made it big. I told you to let them do it outside the house! They left the bags and the rings and they didn’t take the watch, they just left everything there. So, it looks like a hit now.”

Panayiotou is then seen telling Siyoni not to contact him and to just leave a missed call on his phone since his calls are being monitored by police.

He tells Siyoni, he will tell the police that he is in East London and that he contacted him about steroids.

Panayiotou can be seen leaving the vehicle.