Mur­der, rape ac­cused f ires lawyer in late move

The Herald (South Africa) - - NEWS - Kathryn Kim­ber­ley

A YOUNG Port El­iz­a­beth man ac­cused of mur­der, as well as the rape of an el­derly woman, fired his lawyer yes­ter­day as his pre-trial con­fer­ence was about to get un­der way in the Port El­iz­a­beth High Court.

The move saw the 26-year-old’s trial date post­poned to the sec­ond quar­ter of next year, mean­ing he will spend the next six months as an await­ing-trial pris­oner.

Fam­ily mem­bers of the vic­tims sat at the back of the court and sobbed as they heard of the de­lay.

The body of Bhaven Mood­ley, 37, a fa­ther of two, was dis­cov­ered in his Mal­abar home in Jan­uary last year.

He had been stran­gled and the house ran­sacked.

A 66-year-old woman on the premises at the time had also been as­saulted and raped.

The young man was ar­rested along the Sum­mer­strand beach­front af­ter he was spot­ted driv­ing a black Mercedes-Benz AMG, which was reg­is­tered in the woman’s name.

He was also al­legedly linked to the of­fence through fin­ger­prints.

At his bail ap­pli­ca­tion last year, he in­di­cated that he would plead not guilty to the charges.

He can­not be named un­til a for­mal plea has been ac­cepted by the court.

His mat­ter was post­poned to April 17 for a new trial date and for Le­gal Aid SA to ap­point a new lawyer to the case.

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