D-Day for husband killers

The court has already found that Rachel Rittmann and her ex-lover Ryno du Preez had conspired and acted with common purpose to murder her husband.

22 October 2019 | Justice

Gobabis resident Rachel Rittmann and her ex-lover Ryno du Preez, who were found guilty of killing her husband Rudolf Henry Rittmann in August 2013, will face sentencing in the High Court today.

Judge Christie Liebenberg, who is presiding over the matter, is expected to hand down sentences at about 10:00.

They were each found guilty on charges of murder, conspiracy to commit murder and defeating or obstructing the course of justice in a judgement handed down by Judge Liebenberg on 29 August.

They were, however, acquitted on a charge of robbery with aggravating circumstances.

Rittman was found guilty on a lesser charge of theft, after the prosecution proved beyond reasonable doubt through the presentation of the State witness evidence that she was found in unlawful possession of her late husband's wallet and cellphone shortly after the commission of the offence.

Du Preez was found guilty as charged of planning and the actual execution of the killing, while Rittman was convicted as a result of the truthfulness of evidence presented before court by the prosecution team. The prosecution, led by State advocate Marthino Olivier, presented evidence that Rittman and her ex-lover conspired and acted with common purpose.

According to the judgment, Rittman actively participated in the early planning to bring about the death of her husband, in order to cash in on an inheritance, while Du Preez agreed to kill Rudolf by stabbing him to death with a knife at his home in Gobabis on 23 August 2013, because he was in love with his co-accused at the time.

They then transported the body in the deceased's to an area between the Hosea Kutako International Airport and Kapps Farm in the Khomas Region, where they set the vehicle alight with the body inside, in order to conceal evidence.

Olivier asked for the conviction of the two accused because the murder was planned to the finest detail by both Rittman and Du Preez, adding she was always an integral part of the plan to murder her husband for his pension and insurance money.

Legal Aid defence lawyers Ileni Gebhardt and Johan van Vuuren are representing the two accused.

Rittman is being held at the Klein Windhoek police station, while Du Preez is being kept at the Windhoek Correctional Facility's holding cells since his arrest, with no option to post bail.

NAMPA

NAMPA

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