A South African judge, due to sentence Aljar Swartz, above, for murder, said this week that she would ‘take into account’ the fact that killer had been freed of demonic possession by a cleric who carried out an exorcism outside Pollsmoor Prison in Cape Town.
According to this report, Judge Elize Steyn, who is expected to sentence Swartz next week, heard that Methodist Reverend Cecil Begbie had “cleansed” the killer of his demons.
Begbie told the court:
There was a day when I engaged in special prayers for him, where I invited the congregation [in Rondevlei] to stand and to raise their hands towards Pollsmoor Prison and we all then united in prayer, not only for Aljar, but for all inmates of Pollsmoor Prison, including the staff as well.
Speaking during arguments in mitigation of sentence, he said he had met Swartz about five times and it was clear that he was “demon-possessed”.
Swartz was recently found guilty of the premeditated murder of 15-year-old Lee Adams, as well as three counts of incitement to commit murder.
He admitted to beheading the teenager in 2013 so he could sell the body parts to a sangoma (spiritual healer).
Pollsmoor Prison turned down Begbie’s application to perform the exorcism inside the building. Had it been allowed, Swartz’s defence would have filmed it.
Begbie, who had been a minister for almost 50 years, said he was left with no other option but to call upon congregations and the international community to pray for Swartz.
A radical change had then taken place in Swartz, he said.??Relatives of Adams, dressed in the teen’s favourite colour purple, shook their heads at the testimony.
Swartz apparently shared a “very special experience” with the reverend when he visited him in cells at the high court.
There was a moment about three weeks ago when he felt as though he was standing under a waterfall and pure clean water flowed through his whole body after that experience. He felt he was totally set free of all demons.
That means the almighty God, who is not restricted to walls of prisons or prison bars, actually administered to him supernaturally as a result of all prayers. I could also then sense that, yes, there was a radical change in Aljar.
Swartz was able to sleep properly for the first time in years. He experienced tremendous peace of heart and mind, Begbie said.
Prior to this experience, a spiritual counsellor at the prison had led Swartz “to accept Christ”.
Judge Steyn told Swartz’s lawyer, Sheriff Mohamed, that she was not going to allow him to lead evidence on:
Magic, witchcraft and all other things.? How many times in South African law has the court allowed ‘the devil made me do it?’ The court has never accepted it.
But she did say she would take his “cleansing” into account when passing sentence.
Hat tip: BarrieJohn