News / South Africa

Makhosandile Zulu
3 minute read
28 Nov 2018
2:20 pm

Marinda Steyn testifies for Krugersdorp murders

Makhosandile Zulu

A witness has dismissed the testimony that accused number two in the matter, Cecilia Steyn, is a Satanist, saying rather she is a Christian.

Cecilia Steyn (middel) with Marcel Steyn (right), Marinda Steyn (middle) and Zak Valentine (left) during their appearance in May.

Marinda Steyn took the witness stand in the High Court in Johannesburg on Wednesday in the case of the so-called Krugersdorp murders.

The trial of the remaining three accused, Cecilia Steyn, 37, Zak Valentine, 34, and Marcel Steyn, 20, continues today.

Marinda, 52, and Le Roux Steyn, 22 – were sentenced in May after signing a plea deal with the state, with Le Roux turning state witness in the trial of the remaining three.

In May this year, Marinda received a 390-year sentence after signing a plea deal with the state. She will serve her time in the Johannesburg South Prison. She was convicted of 11 murders (25 years for each) and 115 years for all the other crimes she committed, which included fraud, racketeering and managing an enterprise, illegal possession of ammunition and firearms, defeating the ends of justice, robbery, and accessory after the fact of murder.

Marinda took the stand after Cecelia, who concluded her testimony today, who stood accused of being the mastermind behind the murders.

Before concluding her testimony, state prosecutor Gerrit Roberts stated to Cecelia that she had been the puppeteer and mastermind behind the murders and that she had lived off the proceeds from the crimes linked to the murders, however, Cecelia, said this was not true.

Marinda testified that she had met Cecilia in late 2007, describing her as her “best friend” and that the feeling was mutual.

The 52-year-old described Cecilia as a person of “poor health” who at one instance had a lung infection which, coupled with being asthmatic, severely affected her breathing.

Marinda said she was of the view that Cecilia suffered from agoraphobia, a type of anxiety disorder which makes patients fear and avoid places that may cause panic.

She said she was of the view that Cecilia also suffered from dissociative identity disorder, a multiple personality disorder believed to be caused by childhood trauma.

“[She] would mention it but she really didn’t like to talk about it,” Marinda said.

She added that she believed that she had come into contact with at least four of Cecilia’s multiple personalities.

Questioned by the defence advocate on whether Cecilia was an ex-satanist, Marinda said: “It depends on how you define the term.”

She said that at high school, Cecilia had mixed up with the wrong crowd, was “quite a rebel” who “wanted to look evil” and hung out with “goths”.

However, Marinda said she never saw that in Cecilia after her high school career, adding that she regarded her as a Christian who had accepted Jesus as her saviour.

According to previous testimony in court, Cecilia had told members of her ministry, Chosen by God, that she was a 42nd generation witch and joined the OTC (Overcomers Through Christ) group to break away from her Satanic ties.

Marinda told the court that the “Chosen by God” group Cecilia was accused of ministering did not have a formal structure headed by Cecilia and that it was merely a group of friends rather than a ministry.

“The only thing that linked us was that we were a group of friends,” she testified.

In response to the testimony by Le Roux which stated that Cecilia had told the group within her ministry that she was 42nd generation witch, Marinda said: “That is a lie, firstly. Secondly, he [Le Roux] lives in a world of his own.”

Marinda further dismissed Le Roux’s testimony that referring to Cecilia as C had links to Satanism, saying rather it was short for her full name and that a number of people used the shortened C.

She also dismissed the testimony that Cecelia had said one of the victims of the murders needed to be dealt with because they had said a wrong prayer which had led to the deaths of children.

Cecilia, Marinda said, had not been part of the plans and the actual murders which the previous testimony has been implicated in.

The trial continues.

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