Shrien Dewani's lawyers claim he needs 'at least a year' to recover from depression before facing South African courts accused of killing his wife

Lawyers say the 32-year-old Bristol businessman is also suffering from post-traumatic stress

Shrien Dewani’s lawyers today argued that he needed at least a year to recover from depression and post-traumatic stress before facing the South African courts, accused of killing his new bride.

The 32-year-old Bristol businessman and his wife Anni, 28, were on honeymoon in Cape Town in November 2010 when they were held at gunpoint after taking a night time taxi ride through the township of Gugulethu to see some of "the real Africa".

While the driver Zola Tongo and the groom were forced from the car unharmed, Mrs Dewani’s body was discovered the next day in the abandoned car in another township.

Mr Dewani, who has been fighting extradition ever since, denies arranging the contract killing and the High Court temporarily halted the process in March because of his poor mental health.

Today his barrister Clare Montgomery QC told Westminster Magistrates' Court that the process had been hanging over her client like "the sword of Damocles" and he needed "a period of calm".

Chief Magistrate Howard Riddle adjourned the hearing to September 18 for a psychiatrist employed by the South African government to examine Dewani and furnish the court with more information about his condition before making any other decision.