Belfast Telegraph

Home News World

Honeymoon accused faces extradition

The businessman accused of murdering his new wife on their honeymoon can be extradited to South Africa to stand trial, a judge has ruled.

Shrien Dewani, 31, denies any involvement in the death of Anni Dewani, who was shot dead in a taxi in Cape Town last November in an apparent car-jacking.

Her widower, who is accused of ordering the attack, has fought extradition proceedings, saying he is suffering from severe post-traumatic stress disorder.

District Judge Howard Riddle, handing down the judgment at Belmarsh Magistrates' Court in south-east London, said there was a "strong public interest" in Dewani being extradited, however.

He said he had "no doubt" Dewani is at high risk of suicide or self-harm, but that he believed he would receive appropriate mental health care at the hands of the South African authorities.

Dewani, who has been staying at a secure mental health hospital in Bristol, sat in the dock wearing a dark blue sweatshirt and black trousers and stared straight ahead at the judge throughout the hearing. Members of his family were present to hear the decision.

The newlyweds were being chauffeured through the dangerous township of Gugulethu when their taxi was hijacked on November 13. Dewani was ejected while his wife was driven off and shot dead. Her body was found the next morning in the back of the abandoned cab.

Taxi driver Zola Tongo, who has admitted his part in the crime, claimed in a plea agreement with prosecutors that Dewani ordered the car-jacking and paid for a hit on his wife.

Dewani, a care home owner from Bristol, faces charges of murder, conspiracy to commit murder, robbery with aggravating circumstances and obstructing the administration of justice.

The application to extradite Dewani will now be passed to Home Secretary Theresa May for her to make the final decision.


From Belfast Telegraph