Cape Town – Henri van Breda was found guilty of the murder of his parents and brother and the attempted murder of his sister, as well as one count of obstructing justice. Judge Siraj Desai delivered the verdict in the Western Cape High Court on Monday.
Van Breda’s bail was also revoked by Judge Desai, who agreed that he could be held in the hospital section of Pollsmoor prison.
He also went on to say that correctional services must be provided with medical certificates to justify that decision.
23-year-old Van Breda was accused of murdering his parents, Martin and Teresa, and older brother Rudi. He was also charged with the attempted murder of his sister Marli, who was 16 years old at the time of the incident.
The attack took place in the family home in De Zalze security estate, Stellenbosch, in January 2015.
According to Van Breda’s testimony, a laughing, ax-wielding intruder, also armed with a knife, and wearing a balaclava attacked his family.
Desai pointed out several discrepancies in Van Breda’s police statement, plea explanation, and testimony.
“It seems odd that the killer would have killed the entire family and left just one person alive.”
Desai said Van Breda did nothing to help his father or brother during the attack.
“He also did not think a neighbour could help as they were not medical professionals,” Desai said during the judgement.
After hearing all accounts, Judge Desai said the court agreed with the prosecution that it was highly unlikely a perpetrator entered from outside the estate.
Judge Desai also noted that Van Breda’s actions indicated that the accused had an acute awareness of the events that had transpired, and loss of consciousness for two hours and forty minutes was unlikely.
Although having the entire series of events recounted to him, Van Breda showed no emotion on his face as Judge Desai read out the judgement. It is expected that Van Breda will face a lengthy term behind bars when he’s sentenced on 5 June.