Maqubela judgment continues

Judge John Murphy is recounting evidence in the case against Thandi Maqubela and Vela Mabena.

Murder accused Thandi Maqubela (R) and her lawyer (L) in Cape Town. Picture: Catherine Rice/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - The judge in Patrick Maqubela's murder trial on Tuesday recounted dozens of pages of evidence on day two of his lengthy judgment in the Western Cape High Court.

Maqubela, an acting judge, was found dead in an apartment in Bantry Bay in 2009.

His wife Thandi and her business associate were charged with his murder.

Financial gain and marital strife are believed to be the motive behind the killing.

The court on Tuesday heard about the suspicious manner in which Maqubela's body was found, his missing cellphone and the cling wrap used in the crime.

Maqubela's body was found shrouded in a sheet.

Judge John Murphy says there appears to be a deliberate attempt to accelerate the speed of decomposition because the heat in the apartment had been turned up.

He said Maqubela's wife claimed she did not know where the phone was but when police traced it, they found that she had it in her possession the entire weekend.

Maqubela's lawyer on Monday asked the court to reopen the case but the application was dismissed.

The widow is also facing charges of forgery and fraud regarding her husband's will.

Maqubela has denied any involvement in the murder.

NEW 'PROOF'

Maqubela on Thursday said she has proof that politically connected people were behind her husband's murder.

Speaking outside court, Maqubela showed journalists a text message that her husband allegedly sent to former cabinet minister Zola Skweyiya in 2008.

In the message, he said the ANC should not be used to drag the country down and was critical of the political leadership.

When asked to elaborate on her theory, Maqubela would not explain how the text message exonerated her.

She also failed to explain exactly who the message implicated.

Judgment in the trial will continue on Wednesday.