The length of time that it took for this matter to come to trial was incredibly stressful. The date changes and delays were disruptive and emotionally unsettling. We were initially told that the high court trial would start about six months after the hijack, which never happened. Several other dates were mentioned, but none of them ever materialised. We were told that the 31 October 2011 was D-Date and psychologically we prepared ourselves for this date and cleared our diaries for a two-week period. Again, when it didn’t get underway, we felt disheartened and despairing of this trauma ever coming to an end.
The trial finally started in Nov 2012, a full year later, and nearly 3 years after the hijack occurred. However, when the defendants saw that the evidence was becoming very damning, they “fired” their Legal Aid advocate and asked for the case to be adjourned whilst they sought their own legal representation, quite likely just a stalling tactic. The case resumed again in June 2013, and was again adjourned for two weeks whilst the defendants finalised their legal representation and called for their own witnesses.
The trial was characterised by lies, deceit, fabrications and every attempt to derail the legal process. We, who lived with the harsh reality and consequences of the hijack, found it extremely hard to retain our composure during this barrage of outright lies and falsehoods. It is just as well that breathing and swallowing are involuntary reflexes as we at times virtually stopped doing those. It was horrible, horrible, horrible.
The next post is, ‘Justice Prevails, and yet …..’