Witness under the microscope
The State yesterday questioned the credibility of a defence accident reconstructionist in the trial of Preshalin Naidoo, who was involved in the fatal car accident in which Top Billing television presenter Simba Mhere was killed.
Naidoo, 24, is currently on trial in the Randburg Magistrate’s Court for allegedly causing the fatal 2015 car accident that claimed the lives of Mhere and his friend, Kady-Shay O’Bryan.
Naidoo faces two charges of culpable homicide. The crash involved three cars and happened on William Nicol Drive, in Fourways, Johannesburg, on January 31.
During proceedings yesterday, State prosecutor Dinesh Nandkissor questioned accident reconstruction expert Stanley Bezuidenhout about whether he had consulted with Naidoo prior to conducting his report, before it was finalised in February.
Bezuidenhout said he met with Naidoo around December 2015, which was after he had already examined the vehicle.
Nandkissor argued that the testimony of Naidoo and Bezuidenhout were too similar and further that his website stated that his company aligned their investigation to that of their clients and their legal representatives.
Nandkissor referred to a previous case where Bezuidenhout testified and the judgment by the magistrate was that his findings were unreliable.
Bezuidenhout said he was unaware of the judgment and that the statement on his site was made about two years ago.
Defence advocate François Roets asked Bezuidenhout whether he had been manipulated into a conclusion of his report.
“I don’t tailor my fi ndings,” said Bezuidenhout. “In our industry, most knowledge comes from research and new findings.”
“You totally exclude speed?” Magistrate David Mahango then asked.
“At the time of the collision, yes,” Bezuidenhout responded.
Mahango said that it was important to consider what speed Naidoo’s vehicle was travelling at prior to the collision. The matter was postponed to January 15, 2018 for arguments. – ANA