Groot Aub Murder Accused Pleads Not Guilty

Groot Aub murder accused, Gregory Kangandjera, pleaded not guilty to all charges he is facing in the Windhoek High Court before Judge Nate Ndauendapo.

He is arraigned on one charge of murder, one charge of assault and one count of defeating or obstructing the course of justice. After State Aocate Palmer Khumalo read the charges to Kangandjera he answered not guilty through a DamaraNama interpreter. Joshua Kaumbi who been appointed by the Department of Legal Aid to represent Kangandjera confirmed that the pleas were in accordance with his instructions and informed the judge that his client chose not to disclose the basis of his defence but that it would become apparent during the course of the trial.

The State alleges that the 35- year-old Kangandjera killed his girlfriend of three months, Loretta Kruger, who was 33 at the time of her demise at the Groot Aub village during the period November 13 to 18 2010. On the second charge it is alleged that Kangandjera assaulted Ipuleni Natangwe by slapping him on November 13 2010 and the third count states that he is guilty of defeating or obstructing the course of justice as a result of him tying a rope around the neck of Kruger and a tree branch and then reported to the police and members of the community that she committed suicide. According to the summary of substantial facts in the indictment Kangandjera and Kruger were involved in a romantic relationship and that he found her in the company of Natangwe at a local bar in Groot Aub. It is further stated that Kangandjera assaulted Natangwe because he found him in the company of Kruger. It is also alleged that Kangandjera severely assaulted Kruger during the period November 13 to 18 2010 by kicking, beating and hitting her, failing to obtain medical assistance for the deceased and that he kept her in his residence. It is further alleged that Kangandjera strangled Kruger to death and then staged a suicide scene and reported to the police and members of the public that Kruger committed suicide by hanging herself. Kruger died as a result of strangulation. The autopsy report on Kruger however indicates that she died as a result of eight broken ribs and blood on the brain and kidneys. These injuries were allegedly sustained at the hands of Kangandjera.

Residents of Groot Aub staged a demonstration in front of the Rehoboth Magistrate Court during Kangandjera’s first appearance, demanding that he be remanded in custody without bail. Earlier reports stated that Kangandjera started assaulting Kruger after he found her hugging Natangwe and continued with the assault on their way home. Eyewitness reports say that he assaulted her so severely with his bare fists and a stick that she could not walk and he allegedly ran one kilometre to his residence and asked two men to help him carry Kruger, claiming that she was too drunk to walk by herself. Kruger was pregnant at the time of her death and also left behind five other children.

Source : New Era