Courtney Pieters: State witnesses wrap up evidence

It's been an emotional and gruelling three days, especially for Courtney Pieters' mother Juanita.

Mortimer Saunders seen in court on 29 May 2018. He has pleaded guilty to a charge of Courtney Pieters's murder but insists it was not premeditated. Picture: Lauren Isaacs/EWN

CAPE TOWN - Three State witnesses have wrapped up their evidence in the trial of Mortimer Saunders.

Saunders is standing trial for the rape and murder of 3-year-old Courtney Pieters in May 2017.

The accused has this week admitted to feeding the child poison and beating, choking and suffocating her, but he has insisted it was not premeditated and has pleaded not guilty to rape.

The State refused to accept the accused's admissions, which means two not guilty pleas have been entered into the record.

It's been an emotional and gruelling three days, especially for Courtney Pieters' mother Juanita.

The woman who found her body nine days after her disappearance, Delft neighbourhood watch member Pamela Scholtz took the stand on Wednesday.

Scholtz broke down and sobbed as she explained how, while scratching through leaves on land in Epping Industria, she came across the body of the little girl.

Scholtz, as well as State witness Marsha Wenn - a relative of courtney - testified that Saunders had helped search for the child.

The matter has been postponed to next Wednesday.