Murder accused ‘saved victim from drowning’

LAWYER TELLS COURT RAMEEZ THOMAS SHOULD BE CHARGED WITH MANSLAUGHTER

Weekend Argus

Reporter – Bianca Capazorio

RAMEEZ Thomas, the Manenberg teenager accused of murdering three-year-old Faeez Wesso last week, saved the boy’s life just a month prior to his death. That was what the Wynberg Magistrate’s Court heard yearderday from Thomas’s attorney Ben Matthewson, who told how his client saved Faeez from drowning. He added that although he had not seen it, Faaez’s mother Mesca Wesso had apparently given an interview to e.tv last week indicating that the death of her son had been an accident. Matthewson said if this was the case, his client should be charged with manslaughter, and not murder. Thomas, 18, from Rhone Walk in Manenberg, faces four charges including murder, illegal possession of a firearm, illegal possession of ammunition, and pointing a firearm. He appeared in court yesterday dressed in a maroon and yellow Nike top and a white beanie. It was his second court appearance. Thomas allegedly got into an argument with Mesca Wesso last week after a police raid looking for guns and ammunition. He believed she was the one who had tipped off police. He had pointed the gun at her while they were arguing, and then pointed it at Faeez. The gun went off, and the boy died later that day as a result of his injuries. Matthewson was arguing for his client’s right to a bail hearing after the Sate indicated it would oppose bail. Given the statements by Faeez’s mother, he said, the fact that Thomas voluntarily handed himself over to police, and that the victim and the accused’s families were still close, the Staet should find the first available date for a bail application. State prosecutor Keppler Uys said they would oppose bail, given the seriousness of the offence, and Thomas’s links to Hard Livings gang activity. While they would investigate Matthewson’s claims, Faeez’s mother had “painted a totally different picture” of the accused, Uys added. Magistrate Marietjie van Eeden postponed the case to next Friday for a bail application. Thomas will remain in custody. As he was led away, Thomas turned to the packed court and waved and smiled a toothless smile at his mother Rowayda, who last week cried loudly and nearly collapsed after her son’s appearance. She told reporters at his last court appearance that the shooting had been an accident, and that her son was a “good” boy, and she did not know that he was involved with gangs. This week she remained calm, leaving the courtroom quietly, and later consulting with Matthewson after her son’s appearance.