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Rob Packham's defence casts doubt on fairness of murder investigation

Senior counsel for Rob Packham, Advocate Craig Webster, has told the Western Cape High Court that Investigating Officer Ivan Sonnenberg's investigation into Gill Packham's murder has been targeted and biased against the accused.

Alleged wife killer Rob Packham appears in the Western Cape High Court on 19 March. Picture: Lauren Isaacs/EWN

CAPE TOWN - The senior counsel for alleged wife killer Rob Packham has submitted that the investigating officer in the matter hasn't conducted a fair and even-handed investigation.

Detective Sergeant Ivan Sonnenberg was called to testify on day seven of the murder trial on Wednesday.

The Constantia businessman is on trial for the murder of Gill Packham in February last year.

Her body was found in the boot of her burnt-out BMW at Diep River train station on 22 February 2018, hours after she disappeared.

Senior counsel for Rob Packham, Advocate Craig Webster, has told the Western Cape High Court that Investigating Officer Ivan Sonnenberg's investigation into Gill Packham's murder has been targeted and biased against the accused.

He's questioned why a photo ID parade was held instead of a live one and why it was held about seven weeks after the deceased's body was found.

Sonnenberg responded, saying that he conducted the investigation to the best of his ability and had no reason to target anybody or maliciously implicate Packham in his wife's murder.

The officer says that several aspects led to Packham's arrest, like the accused contacting a colleague on the day his wife disappeared to arrange an alibi.

The detective testified that while searching the garage at the couple's Constantia home, they found a broken axe in between lots of linen. The axe was sprayed to check for DNA but officers found nothing.

Sonnenberg says it was strange to find the axe there.

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