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Cape Town rape, murder accused’s lawyer quits

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A Cape Town man, charged with killing a woman and raping two others he met while cycling, has to look for another lawyer after his withdrew from the case on Monday.

Likhaya Makana, representing Johan Lewis, applied to the Western Cape High Court to withdraw because of a “conflict of instructions” regarding the plea explanation and admissions.

His application was granted and Lewis was asked to apply for a lawyer through Legal Aid.

The State had been ready to proceed with the first day of trial on Monday morning, but now has to wait until Lewis gets legal representation.

The matter was taken off the trial roll and put onto the pre-trial roll to finalise arrangements. Lewis would remain in custody until his appearance on Friday for pre-trial proceedings.

He faces 12 charges, which include rape, kidnapping, murder and attempted murder.

Wearing a striped orange shirt and black pants, he walked past the family of Tracey-Lee Meyer, one of his alleged victims, with chains around his limbs and guided by three police officers.

Victim offered a ride

Meyer was last seen alive by her sister on September 12 2013. The State will allege that she was raped and strangled to death. It intends to present DNA evidence, according to the summary of substantial facts.

On October 15 2010, a woman was walking to a friend’s home in Lotus River and met with the accused and another man, both on bicycles.

She was offered a lift and allegedly taken to Lewis’s home in Tsessebe Road, instead of her friend’s home.

The State will allege that he tried strangling her with a ligature and raped her repeatedly. She was beaten with a sjambok and threatened with a firearm. She was only allowed to leave the house the next morning.

In a third incident, a woman went to a shop in Parkwood on January 17 2010. She apparently met with Lewis and another man, who were both on bicycles and known to her.

She apparently accompanied them to a bridge near the railway station in Plantation Road, Ottery.

The State alleges she was raped, taken to Lotus River, and then returned to the bridge. News24

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