CAPE TOWN, South Africa – A South African man convicted Tuesday in the murder of a Swedish woman honeymooning in Cape Town says her British husband paid to have her killed, according to a plea agreement submitted in court.
Zola Tongo claimed Shrien Dewani approached him about killing his new wife the day the couple arrived in South Africa. Anni Dewani's body was found the next day in a Cape Town township; she had been shot in the back of the neck.
Shrien Dewani has denied any involvement in his wife's murder in interviews given to British press, which has been speculating for weeks about his possible role.
Tongo said he drove the couple from the airport to their hotel on Nov. 13. Once his wife was out of earshot, the driver said Shrien Dewani asked if he could find someone to kill her. Tongo said Shrien Dewani offered 50,000 rand each (about $7,000), but paid only 1,000 (about $145).
The case has drawn wide attention in Britain and in South Africa, where crime is high but attacks on foreign tourists are rare.
As a result of his plea bargain, Tongo was convicted and sentenced to 18 years in prison. He was expected to testify against the other suspects, including two South Africans who were arrested soon after Anni Dewani's body was discovered.
Shrien Dewani had told authorities the couple was returning to their hotel from dinner when gunmen forced him and the driver from the vehicle.