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Hitman Tells Shrien Dewani 'Honeymoon Murder' Trial He Was Hired To Kill Anni

08/10/2014 12:38 BST | Updated 09/10/2014 10:59 BST

UPDATE: Dewani Logged Into Gaydar The Day After His Wife's Body Was Found, Murder Trial Hears

A convicted gunman has told a court how he was hired to kill the wife of honeymoon murder suspect Shrien Dewani.

Mziwamadoda Qwabe, 29, came face-to-face with Anni Dewani's family as he told the Western Cape High Court in South Africa he demanded a fee of 15,000 Rand (around £830 at today's rate) to carry out the attack on 28-year-old Anni, having been told: "Somebody needs to be killed."

Standing in the witness box flanked by security guards and seeing Dewani for the first time since the murder, Qwabe said he was contacted by Zola Tongo, the Dewanis' taxi driver, the day before the killing.

shrien and anni dewani

Anni Dewani - pictured here with husband Shrien - died on her honeymoon in South Africa

He told the court: "On the Friday (November 12, 2010) I received a call from Monde (Molombe, a friend).

"He told me that there was a job that needed to be done. Somebody wanted a job done.

"I said 'Okay, you can hand my number over'.

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"The guy's name was Zola. He told me that he has a job and we arranged that we should meet.

"We agreed that we would meet the following day, the Saturday.

"Zola was not known to me, only to Monde. He subsequently told me somebody wanted somebody to be killed. Do I know anyone? He asked what we needed. I said 15,000 (Rand)."

mziwamadoda qwabe

Mziwamadoda Qwabe told a court he was hired to kill Anni

Asked by prosecutor Adrian Mopp to explain what happened on the day of the murder, Qwabe said: "There was a husband who wanted his wife to be killed.

"Anni would be killed and it needed to look like a hijacking.

"Nothing would happen to the husband and Zola."

Dewani, again wearing a dark suit, white shirt and a black tie, shot Qwabe a long stare as the prosecution witness was ushered hurriedly into the courtroom, just inches from where Dewani was sitting in the dock.

Dewani, extradited to South Africa after a four-year battle, denies hiring Tongo to arrange the killing and make it look like a car jacking gone wrong.

dewani

Dewani denies murder, conspiracy to commit kidnapping, robbery with aggravating circumstances, kidnapping, and defeating the ends of justice

Qwabe, from the Khayelitsha township where Mrs Dewani's lifeless body was discovered on November 14, 2010, has already confessed to murder, kidnapping, robbery and illegal possession of a firearm.

He is serving a 25-year sentence having been convicted in August 2012.

Dewani denies murder, conspiracy to commit kidnapping, robbery with aggravating circumstances, kidnapping, and defeating the ends of justice.

In court on Monday, on the first day of his trial, he said he was bisexual and had indulged in sexual relations with male prostitutes.

The 34-year-old businessman, from Westbury-on-Trym near Bristol, also said he could be controlling and intense, but he maintained that he and his wife were in love with each other.

Shrien Dewani Murder Trial

Prosecutors say Dewani hatched a plot to kill his bride because he wanted out of the marriage after an 18-month romance that culminated in a lavish Mumbai wedding.

Qwabe said he and fellow convict Xolile Mngeni arranged for transport to meet up with the Dewanis' cab for the attack, during which the millionaire's mobile phone would also be taken as part of the ruse.

He told the court: "Zola phoned later on and said he was at the restaurant.

"He told me that the job needed to be done that evening. The husband wanted the wife to be killed that same evening."

Describing the carjacking, former Table Mountain tour guide Qwabe said: "(Mngeni) had the gun.

"As it (Tongo's car) approached I got into the driver's side.

"(Mngeni) got into the passenger side and Zola got into the back. I saw in the (rear view) window a guy and behind me was a lady."

He said the group passed a police car as the incident unfolded, but that they carried on their way.

"I ordered Zola to get out of the car. He told me the money was in a pouch behind the front passenger door," Qwabe said, adding they drove further into a township.

"I stopped the vehicle, I asked the husband to get out of the car."

Asked by the prosecutor if there was any resistance from Dewani to leave, he said he did not recall.

"The husband was now out of the vehicle and I drove on," Qwabe said. He said he was behind the wheel when Anni was fatally wounded.

Qwabe said: "I heard a gun shot. (Mngeni) said 'I shot the lady'."I pulled over on to the pavement and stopped the car. I saw she (Anni) was on the back seat of the car."

Qwabe said he found the bullet casing then tossed his gloves away nearby.

"He (Mngeni) takes out the money," Qwabe said, adding that 10,000 rand was in the pouch and 4,000 rand was seized from "the husband".

Qwabe said he went home briefly before going out to "socialise"."It was Saturday evening," the witness said.

Qwabe said he did not know what was happening in the back of the cab, or if there was any conversation between the gunman and Anni Dewani, because he was "focused on the road".

"The shot was fired when the car was in motion," Qwabe said.

"I just decided to stop. I had quick glances at the wife - she was in the back seat. I think she was lying."

He said he had "no sense" of whether the victim was still alive or not.

"I took a quick glance at her but I was also looking for the gun casing," he added.