Dewani may be cleared of 'honeymoon murder': report
Indian-origin businessman Shrien Dewani, accused of murdering his wife while on honeymoon in South Africa, could be cleared after fresh ballistic evidence and CCTV footage cast doubts over his involvement, a report said today.
Police have accused Dewani of hiring a team of hit men to kill his new bride, Anni, while holidaying in Cape Town in November 2010.
However, 33-year-old Dewani, fighting against his extradition from UK to South Africa, has always maintained that he was forced from a taxi by carjackers who drove off with his Swedish-Indian wife and killed her.
Anni's body was found in an abandoned car in Cape Town the next day.
Experts at the Forensic Firearms Consultancy in London now claim that it appears that a bullet hit 28-year-old Anni by accident, Daily Mirror reported.
An autopsy showed the fatal bullet struck Anni's left hand and went through her chest, causing fatal neck injuries.
The newspaper further claimed that an upcoming BBC TV investigation will show that initial police interviews and CCTV images raise further concerns about the case.
Dewani's alleged accomplices, taxi driver Zola Tongo and gunmen Xolile Mngeni and Mziwamadoda Qwabe, failed to mention the British citizen in their initial interviews.
It is claimed Dewani was eventually accused by a desperate Tongo in exchange for a lighter sentence.
"The prosecution case relies on Tongo, who had every reason to put the majority of the blame on Dewani. The pressure at the time was that this sort of incident needed to be explained rapidly due to the economy of the Western Cape which relies on UK tourism," said Paul Hoffman, a former acting high court judge in South Africa.
"Britons being killed by taxi drivers doesn't look good," he said.
It has also emerged that text messages Dewani supposedly sent Tongo on the night of the murder, a crucial part of the prosecution case, do not exist.
Dewani is currently in a psychiatric hospital while his lawyers fight his extradition at the Supreme Court.
Tongo, Mngeni and Qwabe have been jailed for their roles in Anni's murder.