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In The News South Africa

Cell phone data helps trace the movements of murdered Jayde Panayiotou

PORT ELIZABETH, June 21 – Through a geographical information system and cell phone data, a National Investigative Analyst has plotted the movements of the vehicle Jayde Panayiotou was allegedly kidnapped and transported in before she was killed two years ago.

Thereza Botha testified on Wednesday for the second day in the ongoing murder trial involving Christopher Panayiotou and his two co-accused.

According to the data, the vehicle rented by Jayde’s alleged killer, Sizwe Vumazonke left his house at 5.24 am and travelled to close proximity of Sinethemba Nenembe.

Data indicated that Vumazonke made a call to both Nenembe and Khusta Vandala.

At 6.03am the vehicle was at the intersection of the R102 and Kabega Road. Some 40 minutes later, Vumazonke agained called Khusta. Vumazonke’s handset received reception from the Linton Grange tower, near Jayde’s home, while Khusta’s reception came from Kwadesi.

At 6.27am the vehicle tracker data indicated harsh braking, but the vehicle’s ignition was not switched off. According to Botha’s evidence this was the last time the vehicle circled the Stelen Glen Complex.

Vumazonke’s number again called Nenembe – both their numbers received reception from the Linton Grange tower, situated near the couples complex.

By 6.28am the vehicle travelled at a speed of 8km/h and 16km/h in Deacon Road.

“GIS movement of the vehicle indicates that [Stelen Glen] block was circled six to seven times,” Botha testified.

From Deacon Road the vehicle moved along the N2, onto the R102 and from there the R334 towards Uitenhage.

By 7.09 am Vumazonke made a call to self-confessed middleman Luthando Siyoni. At this point cell phone data places Vumazonke’s phone in Kwanobhule.

According to Botha’s evidence, between 7.12am and 7.13am the vehicle’s transmission was switched off and it made a U-turn.

“The measurement of the point where the vehicle ignition was switched off, and where [Jayde’s] body was found is approximately 22 meters,” he said.

Panayiotou is accused of paying Siyoni, a bouncer from his Infinity nightclub, to hire Vumazonke to kidnap and kill Jayde.

The State alleges Jayde was kidnapped outside the couple’s complex Stelen Glen in Kabega Park on April 21,m 2015, while she was waiting for a lift to work.

The State alleges that Sinethemba Nenembe assisted Vumazonke to kidnap and murder the school teacher at the behest of her husband. Vumazonke has since died.

According to the State, Zolani Sibeko is linked to the crime through cellphone mapping to being outside Jayde’s complex in the days before her murder. The State alleges that Sibeko and Vandala were approached by Vumazonke to organise a firearm for the killing.

The trial continues.

-African News Agency (ANA)

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