CCTV footage 'shows Dewani giving package to taxi driver'

Significant new evidence has come to light against Shrien Dewani in the case of his wife's murder, the High Court in London was told yesterday.

Mr Dewani, 30, was freed from custody after Mr Justice Ouseley granted bail on stringent conditions with a £250,000 surety, despite opposition from the South African authorities.

Ben Watson, appearing for the South Africans, who want to extradite the businessman over allegations that he conspired to murder his new bride, Anni, 28, argued that fresh evidence demonstrated there was "a very powerful case against Mr Dewani", which increased the risk of him taking flight if allowed bail.

Mr Watson told the court that this included new CCTV footage and independent evidence that Mr Dewani had obtained money on the black market, allegedly to fund the murder. He said the taxi driver Zola Tongo's evidence that he had been paid to arrange the hit was supported by footage showing him surreptitiously receiving a white plastic packet from Mr Dewani three days after the murder. "We say the net is closing," added Mr Watson.

The couple, from Westbury-on-Trym, Bristol, had been married for two weeks, and were on honeymoon in Cape Town, when they were held at gunpoint on the night of 13 November in the township of Gugulethu. While the driver and groom were forced from the car unharmed, Mrs Dewani's body was found the next day in the abandoned car. The Swedish-born engineer had a single bullet wound to the neck.

Earlier this week Tongo, who was jailed for 18 years after making a plea agreement with prosecutors, claimed in a South African court that Mr Dewani had offered him R15,000 (£1,300) to hire hitmen. Yesterday Clare Montgomery QC, for Mr Dewani, said aspects of the case were "frankly absurd", adding: "Your lordship may regard it as at least improbable, even for an experienced criminal, to arrive at a foreign airport, to pick up a taxi driver of a different race and nationality and decide within an hour or so of making his acquaintance to recruit him, in a 30-minute conversation, into a plan to murder his wife."

The South African authorities had appealed to the High Court against a decision by a judge at City of Westminster magistrates' court to grant bail. But yesterday the judge allowed bail after ruling there was "strong support" for the submission that "Dewani genuinely hopes that the investigation will clear him" and would not flee.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
ebooks
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

Who remembers that this week we enter the 150th anniversary year of the end of the American Civil War, asks Robert Fisk
Homeless Veterans appeal: Former soldiers pay their respects to a friend who also served

Homeless Veterans appeal

Former soldiers pay their respects to a friend who also served
Downfall of Dustin 'Screech' Diamond, the 'Saved By The Bell' star charged with bar stabbing

Scarred by the bell

The downfall of the TV star charged with bar stabbing
Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Security breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
Cuba's golf revolution: But will the revolutionary nation take 'bourgeois' game to its heart?

Will revolutionary Cuba take 'bourgeois' golf to its heart?

Fidel Castro ridiculed the game – but now investment in leisure resort projects is welcome
The Locked Room Mysteries: As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor Otto Penzler explains the rules of engagement

The Locked Room Mysteries

As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor explains the rules of engagement
Amy Adams on playing painter Margaret Keane in Tim Burton's Big Eyes

How I made myself Keane

Amy Adams hadn’t wanted to take the role of artist Margaret Keane, because she’d had enough of playing victims. But then she had a daughter, and saw the painter in a new light
Ed Richards: Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

Parting view of Ofcom chief... we hate jokes on the disabled

Bad language once got TV viewers irate, inciting calls to broadcasting switchboards. But now there is a worse offender, says retiring head of the media watchdog, Ed Richards
A look back at fashion in 2014: Wear in review

Wear in review

A look back at fashion in 2014
Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015. Might just one of them happen?

Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015

Might just one of them happen?
War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

The West needs more than a White Knight

Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

The stories that defined 2014

From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?