Montecasino murder down to whodunnit


A night time view of the popular entertainment venue of Montecasino located in northern Johannesburg. Picture: Ignotus340.

JOHANNESBURG – Judge Delize Smith has no doubt Dustan Blom was murdered before his body was dumped in the boot of a car parked at Montecasino in 2013. Now, she must rule on who is responsible.

The two people who stand accused of Blom&39;s murder (among other charges) first appeared in Randburg Magistrate&39;s Court in May 2014. The matter was postponed and later moved to the South Gauteng HIgh Court sitting in Palm Ridge.

Former stripper Maruschka Robinson (25) and her co-accused, JP Malan (34) face several charges, including robbery with aggravating circumstances and defeating the ends of justice.

Alleged drug trafficker and alleged drug dealer Malan alone faces charges of possessing several fraudulent identities.

On Monday, 22 June 2015, Robinson&39;s attorney, Jesse Penton argued there was no doubt Blom was killed. Judge Smith agreed when she began to pass judgment on Monday afternoon.

"Now the question: whodunnit?" said Penton.

State pathologist Dr Shirley Moeng previouslty testified Blom was strangled before his body was stuffed in a car parked in a casino lot.

Robinson testified she mopped up a trail of blood at Blom&39;s house where, according to her version, Malan put the deceased in a sleeper hold.

Days later, Blom&39;s badly discoloured, decomposing body was dumped in the boot of his own car. He died as "as a result of being strangled" as Judge Smith read from the report today.

According to the State’s version of events leading up to his killing, the co-accused were a "criminal pair" who worked as a team.

Advocate Zaais van Zyl said Robinson and Malan were a "modern-day Bonnie and Clyde who did drugs, death with impunity."

"They’re fifty-fifty partners. Half, half," submitted Van Zyl.

Van Zyl submitted Robinson and Malan were in high spirits at Montecasino following Blom’s death.

"They were celebrating, high-fiving each other," said Van Zyl who argued it was "the death of Dustan Blom and obtaining his cards" that prompted their mood.

According to surveillance footage and financial records from Montecasino, the pair were seen at Montecasino hours after Blom was strangled to death.

Robinson entered Blom&39;s bank PIN into an ATM and the two withdrew more than R25,000 cash from the deceased&39;s account.

Her laywer said Malan had "no sense of urgency" when he left Blom&39;s home to use Blom&39;s bank card and withdraw money.

"Accused number two knew at that stage that the deceased was dead," sumbitted Penton.

Robinson and Malan have traded accusations on who is responsible for Blom&39;s death. Penton argued Malan knew Blom was dead when the two accused went to Montecasino, but Robinson was unawares.

"They draw money, they walk around, they play machines. They don’t go back to the house, they book a guesthouse in Randburg," he said.

"The version of accused number two [Malan] is clearly false. He is trying to shift the blame onto accused number one [Robinson]."

He argued Robinson "could not have foreseen" that putting Blom in a strangle-hold would cause his death. 

Penton said, "Accused number one was not involved that particular evening. Accused went it alone."

Judge Smith began handing down her judgment summarising the evidence and testimony submitted in court.

She said Blom inherited a large sum of money when his second wife died giving birth to twins in March 2013. "He had apparently no control of his financial affairs," said Smith who added Blom visited strip clubs and spent money on girls.

"The deceased abused alcohol. Then he met a lady, Tracy, who apparently persuaded him to get his life together."

Smith will resume passing judgment on Tuesday, 22 June 2015 in the South Gauteng High Court sitting in Palm Ridge.