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Dewani trial: Prosecution fights acquittal application

The state has begun arguing why Shrien Dewani's application for an acquittal should be dismissed.

FILE: State prosecutor Advocate Adrian Mopp. Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - The prosecution in the Shrien Dewani murder trial has begun putting forward reasons as to why his application for a discharge must be dismissed.

The Briton's defence wants him acquitted after attacking the prosecution's case saying the evidence isn't credible.

The British businessman was extradited to South Africa in April to stand trial for the alleged orchestration of his wife, Anni Hindocha Dewani' s murder.

Anni was killed in an alleged staged hijacking in a Cape Town township in November 2010 while she and Shrien were on their honeymoon.

Three South Africans have already been convicted for their parts in the crime, one of whom has passed away following a battle with cancer.

Senior state prosecutor Adrian Mopp began his arguments by sketching the background to the case.

He told the court that convicted taxi driver Zola Tongo was aware he'd done a terrible thing.

Tongo is the state's key witness.

Judge Jeanette Traverso then asked, "how many mistakes did he make?"

Mopp conceded by saying many.

Judge Traverso has asked the prosecution a barrage of questions about apparent holes in its case.

Soon after Mopp began laying out the state's case, Traverso peppered him with questions, wanting to know why Dewani, who had never been to the country before, would go along with the 'loose arrangements' that made up the alleged plot to kill Anni.

She also asked him why Dewani's alleged co-conspirators had robbed him of an additional R4,000 if he was involved in the plot.

Mopp tried to explain some of the apparent holes in the state's case by saying the men involved were amateur criminals and the plot would have been comical if it didn't end so tragically.

After this, the judge will decide whether or not the case should be dismissed.

To read the full heads of arguments, click here.

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