Wife accused of suffocating judge with cling wrap

Thandi Maqubela banking on white lawyers
Thandi Maqubela [centre] banking on white lawyers

The murder case of Acting Judge Patrick Maqubela is expected to resume in the Western Cape High Court on Tuesday morning after Judge John Murphy last week amended charges against the two accused.

The amendments will now include the phrase that “the accused have caused the death of the late judge by means unknown”. The State has argued that the accused used plastic cling wrap to suffocate the judge.

Maqubela’s widow Thandi and her co-accused Vela Mabena are on trial for the 2009 murder.

Another amendment on the charges is that of forgery, faced by the widow. Judge Murphy ruled that the charge will now include the unlawful making of the will. He says the amendments are evidence-driven and will not affect the defence. Murphy says a State pathologist earlier testified that the cause of death could not be determined, but did not rule out other means.

He says the court has taken into consideration the constitutional rights of the accused to a fair trial and the defence team can still call more witnesses. The defence maintains that Judge Maqubela died of natural causes. – SABC