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Marli van Breda refuses to give evidence against Henri

A schoolgirl who was left for dead during the axe massacre of her family is refusing to give evidence in defence of her brother on trial for the shocking bloodbath.

Marli van Breda had her jugular vein slashed and suffered five axe blows to the head in the frenzied murder of her parents and older brother, for which brother Henri stands accused.

The 19 year-old student remembers nothing about the barbaric slaughter, in January 2015, and was not called as a prosecution witness at the triple murder trial of Henri.

The 19 year-old student remembers nothing about the barbaric slaughter, in January 2015, and was not called as a prosecution witness at the triple murder trial of Henri

Marli van Breda had her jugular vein slashed and suffered five axe blows to the head in the frenzied murder of her parents and older brother, for which brother Henri (pictured middle) stands accused

Marli van Breda had her jugular vein slashed and suffered five axe blows to the head in the frenzied murder of her parents and older brother, for which brother Henri (pictured middle) stands accused

Although the state has now made its uncalled witnesses available to the defence team, Marli is refusing to testify on behalf of her brother, the court was told.

Henri van Breda, 22, claims he watched helpless through a crack in a bathroom door as a silhouetted masked man wielding an axe murdered his loved ones, one by one – laughing as he cut them down – in the early hours of the morning, at their luxury home in the winelands of South Africa. If acquitted, he stands to share his family’s £12million fortune with Marli.

As she wrapped up the state’s case against Van Breda, prosecutor Susan Galloway yesterday told the Western Cape High Court that she was making available to the defence all the witnesses she did not call to testy ‘except for Marli van Breda’.

‘This is because Marli has no memory and cannot contribute to the events that night and more importantly because Marli has requested that she not be made available to the court,’ she said.

The siblings, who were the only survivors of the bloodshed that claimed the lives of parents Martin and Teresa, and brother, Rudi, have had little contact since the killings (Henri pictured in court)

The siblings, who were the only survivors of the bloodshed that claimed the lives of parents Martin and Teresa, and brother, Rudi, have had little contact since the killings (Henri pictured in court)

The siblings, who were the only survivors of the bloodshed that claimed the lives of parents Martin and Teresa, and brother, Rudi, have had little contact since the killings.

Marli sustained five gashes to her head and another to her neck, almost slicing off her ear, in the sustained onslaught which left her in a coma for weeks.

Van Breda was left with only minor cuts at the hands of the masked intruder, wielding an axe and a knife, whom he claims to have single-handedly fought off and chased from the family home on the exclusive De Zalze security estate, an hour outside Cape Town.

The first paramedic on the scene Christiaan Koegelenberg told the court how the blood of the butchered family had flowed down the staircase ‘like a waterfall’ when the severely injured Marli was moved from where she lay near her slain mother.

Although the state has now made its uncalled witnesses available to the defence team, Marli (front left) is refusing to testify on behalf of her brother, the court was told

Although the state has now made its uncalled witnesses available to the defence team, Marli (front left) is refusing to testify on behalf of her brother, the court was told

The state’s final witness, a police expert on blood patterns, Captain Marius Joubert said the evidence at the crime scene contradicted Van Breda’s vivid account of the murders, which he gave to the court in a statement at the start of his trial.

Captain Joubert told the court his ‘conclusion that the evidence does not support the actions and events described in Henri’s statement.’

He said the blood of his brother and father, which was soaked into the alleged killer’s clothes, put him next to the victims at the time they were set upon.

‘The bloodstains observed and documented on Henri van Breda’s grey shorts and white socks place Henri in close proximity when force was applied and blood came out,’ the court was told.

Stains and trails of blood in the shower and bathroom ¿ areas that Van Bredi did not claim the intruder accessed ¿ also indicated that a murder weapon had been cleaned or washed (Henri pictured)

Stains and trails of blood in the shower and bathroom – areas that Van Bredi did not claim the intruder accessed – also indicated that a murder weapon had been cleaned or washed (Henri pictured)

Stains and trails of blood in the shower and bathroom – areas that Van Bredi did not claim the intruder accessed – also indicated that a murder weapon had been cleaned or washed.

Crime scene pictures of the slaughtered family, who had recently moved back to South Africa from Australia, were ruled too graphic to be shared in open court.

During weeks of prosecution evidence, the court has heard how the former physics student waited more than four hours before raising the alarm after chasing the killer from the property, despite hearing Rudi’s desperately fighting for breath and seeing Marli twitching and bleeding heavily from her head.

He claimed he had blacked out from a head injury after falling while chasing the intruder, who had an accomplice, and then, when he came round, did not know how to raise the alarm, despite there being a list of emergency numbers stuck to the family fridge. A recording of his belated call to the emergency services operator was played in court in which Van Breda sounded unflustered and calm, despite the scene of carnage that surrounded him.

The former physics student, who is on bail, is expected to be called to give evidence in his own defence when his legal team launch their own case next month. 

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