“I did not do it, they got the wrong guy, I did not do it.”
These were the words of Ernst Litchenstrasser, the man accused of the Arandis murders of Namibian Institute of Mining and Technology (NIMT) Executive Director Eckhart Mueller and his deputy, Heimo Hellwig last month.
Litchenstrasser made these remarks repeatedly to journalists as he got out of the police van and as he entered the courtroom before making his first appearance in the Erongo Regional Court on Thursday on two charges of murder.
The 57-year-old accused who appeared before Magistrate Nelao Brown, was denied bail due to the seriousness of the case, the fact that it is not in the public’s interest as well as the ongoing investigations, as per prosecutor Maria Shilongo’s arguments.
The case was postponed to 24 July to allow for further investigations and to give time to the accused to put his legal representation in order, after he opted to find his own private lawyer.
After several failed attempts to get himself transferred to the Arandis Police holding cells on several complaints about the Swakopmund holding cells, and a hunger strike on his part, Litchenstrasser will now be transferred to the Walvis Bay Prison, which the court believes will be able to cater for his needs.
“Some of my concerns are that I have a medical condition and I need regular check-ups, the Swakopmund cells are unhygienic and unbearable to live in. Also, it has been very difficult for me to contact my wife who is a teacher in Otavi, my doctor who is in Windhoek as well as my lawyer who is in Tsumeb,” he told the court.
The accused who has another court case in connection with Contravening Section 33 of the Arms and Ammunitions Act, after he was found in possession of ammunition without a licence, has been in custody in Swakopmund since 22 April.
Mueller and Hellwig were shot several times in front of the campus office block the morning of 15 April. - Nampa