S v Motleleni

JurisdictionSouth Africa
JudgeWessels JA, Trollip JA and Galgut AJA
Judgment Date06 November 1975
Citation1976 (1) SA 403 (A)
Hearing Date25 September 1975
CourtAppellate Division

Galgut, A.J.A.:

The appellant, to whom I will refer as the accused, was found guilty in the Orange Free State Provincial Division, by a Judge and two assessors, of murder with extenuating circumstances. He was sentenced to nine years' C imprisonment. He appeals to this Court, with leave granted under sec. 363(6) of Act 56 of 1955, against the conviction and sentence.

The victim, to whom I will refer as the deceased, died as a result of a stab wound in his chest which penetrated his left lung and the pulmonary artery. He also had a fractured skull, but this injury did not contribute to his death. The stabbing took place, on a Sunday afternoon, in the main room of a house D in the Tweespruit Bantu Township. There is another room in the house. There is, however, only one door giving access to or providing an exit from the house. The evidence indicates further that there is a large window in the house. The situation of the window and door does not appear from the evidence. It would appear that the door opens inwards, E i.e. into the room.

Several witnesses were called for the State. Of these only the evidence of the two eye-witnesses, Makoeme and Motakane, is relevant to the issues in this appeal. They were at the time sitting and drinking and talking to each other in the main room of the house.

[The learned Judge then analysed the evidence and proceeded].

The Court a quo did not accept the accused's evidence that he F had stabbed the deceased, because of his fear, in self-defence. Before discussing its reasons for so doing it is necessary to set out certain extracts from the evidence of the accused.

[The learned Judge then set out such evidence and proceeded].

It follows from what has been said above that the Court a quo's G reasons for rejecting the evidence of the accused cannot be sustained. The evidence of the accused reads well. There is no reason to find that his version of the facts is not the correct one; there is no reason to find that his version of the events is an afterthought.

It follows from the above that the case must be decided on the H facts as given by the accused. A summary of these facts is:

(i)

The accused and deceased fought on the Friday and the deceased drew a knife causing the accused to run away.

(ii)

On Sunday morning the deceased threatened that he would kill the accused and members of his family.

(iii)

On Sunday afternoon the accused went to his grandmother's house and...

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24 practice notes
  • 2012 index
    • South Africa
    • Juta South African Criminal Law Journal No. , August 2019
    • 16 Agosto 2019
    ...152-153, 156-157, 160-161S v Motaung 2007 (1) SACR 476 (SE) .................................................. 332-334S v Motleleni 1976 (1) SA 403 (A) ....................................................... 88, 90S v Mpofana 1998 (1) SACR 40 (Tk) .................................................
  • 2007 index
    • South Africa
    • Juta South African Criminal Law Journal No. , August 2019
    • 16 Agosto 2019
    ...269S v Motlagomang 1958 (1) SA 626 (T) ................................................. 406S v Motleleni 1976 (1) SA 403 (A) ........................................................ 2S v Mseleku 2006 (2) SACR 574 (D)........................................... 121; 123; 275S v Mtimunye 1994......
  • S v Engelbrecht
    • South Africa
    • Invalid date
    ...SACR 391 (W): referred to S v Ferreira 2004 (2) SACR 454 (SCA): referred to S v Goliath 1972 (3) SA 1 (A): considered S v Motleleni 1976 (1) SA 403 (A): S v Ngomane 1979 (3) SA 859 (A): considered E S v Ntuli 1975 (1) SA 429 (A): considered S v Williams 1995 (2) SACR 251 (CC) (1995 (3) SA 6......
  • S v Dougherty
    • South Africa
    • Invalid date
    ...3 B All SA 507): applied S v Makwanyane and Another 1995 (2) SACR 1 (CC) (1995 (3) SA 391; 1995 (6) BCLR 665): applied S v Motleleni 1976 (1) SA 403 (A): applied S v Ngomane 1979 (3) SA 859 (A): applied J 2003 (2) SACR p38 S v Ngubane 1985 (3) SA 677 (A): compared A S v Ntuli 1975 (1) SA 42......
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20 cases
  • S v Engelbrecht
    • South Africa
    • Invalid date
    ...SACR 391 (W): referred to S v Ferreira 2004 (2) SACR 454 (SCA): referred to S v Goliath 1972 (3) SA 1 (A): considered S v Motleleni 1976 (1) SA 403 (A): S v Ngomane 1979 (3) SA 859 (A): considered E S v Ntuli 1975 (1) SA 429 (A): considered S v Williams 1995 (2) SACR 251 (CC) (1995 (3) SA 6......
  • S v Dougherty
    • South Africa
    • Invalid date
    ...3 B All SA 507): applied S v Makwanyane and Another 1995 (2) SACR 1 (CC) (1995 (3) SA 391; 1995 (6) BCLR 665): applied S v Motleleni 1976 (1) SA 403 (A): applied S v Ngomane 1979 (3) SA 859 (A): applied J 2003 (2) SACR p38 S v Ngubane 1985 (3) SA 677 (A): compared A S v Ntuli 1975 (1) SA 42......
  • S v Heslop
    • South Africa
    • Invalid date
    ...(2) SACR 641 (SCA) C S v Ingram 1995 (1) SACR 1 (A) S v Larsen 1994 (2) SACR 149 (A) S v Maleka 2001 (2) SACR 366 (SCA) S v Motleleni 1976 (1) SA 403 (A) S v Naidoo 1997 (1) SACR 62 (T) S v Ngomane 1979 (3) SA 859 (A) D S v Ntuli 1975 (1) SA 429 (A) at 436 - 7 S v Pillay 1977 (4) SA 531 (A)......
  • S v TS
    • South Africa
    • Invalid date
    ...at 603B – C applied F S v Laubscher 1988 (1) SA 163 (A): referred to S v M and Others 1978 (3) SA 557 (Tk): referred to S v Motleleni 1976 (1) SA 403 (A): referred S v Ndlovu [2002] ZANCHC 5: referred to S v Ngobese and Others 2002 (1) SACR 562 (W): referred to S v Ntuli 1975 (1) SA 429 (A)......
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4 books & journal articles
  • 2012 index
    • South Africa
    • South African Criminal Law Journal No. , August 2019
    • 16 Agosto 2019
    ...152-153, 156-157, 160-161S v Motaung 2007 (1) SACR 476 (SE) .................................................. 332-334S v Motleleni 1976 (1) SA 403 (A) ....................................................... 88, 90S v Mpofana 1998 (1) SACR 40 (Tk) .................................................
  • 2007 index
    • South Africa
    • South African Criminal Law Journal No. , August 2019
    • 16 Agosto 2019
    ...269S v Motlagomang 1958 (1) SA 626 (T) ................................................. 406S v Motleleni 1976 (1) SA 403 (A) ........................................................ 2S v Mseleku 2006 (2) SACR 574 (D)........................................... 121; 123; 275S v Mtimunye 1994......
  • The double life of unlawfulness: Fact and law
    • South Africa
    • South African Criminal Law Journal No. , May 2019
    • 24 Mayo 2019
    ...Law 4ed (2002)96.3S v Goliath 1972 (3) SA 1 (A); JC De Wet Strafref 4ed (1985) 69; S v Ntuli 1975 (1) SA429 (A); S v Motleleni 1976 (1) SA 403 (A).4Ntuli supra (n3); S v De Oliveira 1993 (2) SACR 59 (A).5Snyman op cit (n2) 111.6J Burchell Principles of Criminal Law 3ed (2005) 242.7S v Chret......
  • Battered woman syndrome: Some reflections on the utility of this 'syndrome' to South African women who kill their abusers
    • South Africa
    • South African Criminal Law Journal No. , August 2019
    • 16 Agosto 2019
    ...met. 68 S v T 1986 (2) SA 112 (O) at 129.69 See R v Patel 1959 (3) SA 121 (A); S v Van Antwerpen 1976 (3) SA 399 (T); S v Motleleni 1976 (1) SA 403 (A); S v De Oliveira 1993 (2) SACR 59 (A). © Juta and Company (Pty) 272 SACJ • (2005) 3often stressed that when assessing the reasonableness of......

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