'Kana not responsible for Booysen's death'

Johannes Kana’s lawyer says if his client is guilty of killing Anene Booysen the state must prove it.

Rape and murder accused Johannes Kana appears in the dock on 9 July 2013. Picture: Chanel September/EWN

CAPE TOWN - The lawyer representing Johannes Kana who is accused of Anene Booysen's brutal rape and murder said on Tuesday he is determined to prove his client is not responsible for her death.

Booysen died after she was raped, mutilated and left for dead in February.

Kana, who is the only accused in the case and has confessed to sexually assaulting the 17-year-old appeared in the Bredasdorp Magistrate's Court on Tuesday.

The matter was postponed to September where a pretrial conference will be held.

The pretrial hearing will be heard in the Western Cape High Court after which the matter will be transferred to a Swellendam court for a month-long trial.

Lawyer Pieter du Toit said he will argue that his client did not kill Booysen.

"He has confessed to rape but has denied that he was involved in the murder. This state must prove that he's guilty of murder."

The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) has however indicated it intends calling 52 witnesses to the stand during the trial in October.

The NPA's Eric Ntabazalia said they have strong evidence against Kana.

"For now we're ready to prosecute with only one person. The evidence that we have points to one person and that is Mr Kana."

Shortly before she died, Booysen revealed that five or six men were involved in the attack.

Shortly before she died she did identify one of her attackers as Jonathan Davids.

But charges against Davids have were dropped due to insufficient evidence.

Meanwhile, Kana's family said they would support him no matter what.

Relatives said with the trial three months away, he needed their support now more than ever.

They admit while the case has taken a toll on the entire family, they remain strong for his sake.