Shrien Dewani – the Briton accused of hiring a hit man to murder his wife in South Africa – has been diagnosed with acute stress a court in London has been told.
Mr Dewani had been expected to attend Westminster Magistrates’ Court in London today as extradition proceedings against him began.
However, Dewani has been diagnosed by a psychiatrist as having an acute stress disorder and a depressive adjustment disorder.
This, argued the defence, makes him unfit to attend.
The case was adjourned until February 8th at Belmarsh Magistrates’ Court, while chief magistrate Howard Riddle said decided whether he should be forced to attend.
Mr Dewani will remain on bail until this time.
Dewani is accused of hiring a hetman to kill his 28-year-old wife Anni during their honeymoon in South Africa.
Authorities in South Africa have begun extradition proceedings, charging the accused with conspiracy to murder, murder, kidnapping, robbery with aggravated circumstances and obstruction of the administration of justice.
Anni Dewani, who is originally from Sweden, was shot when the taxi the couple were travelling in was hijacked in the Gugulethu Township on the outskirts of Cape Town on November 13th.
Police spokesman colonel McIntosh Polela criticised Dewani’s decision not to travel to South Africa voluntarily.
“Instead of shutting up and following the process, Mr Dewani has, from his side, decided to defend his case from thousands of miles away, using PR to try to clear his name instead of coming here to do so in court,” he told reporters in South Africa.