Xolile Mngeni, charged with the murder of Anni Dewani during a honeymoon visit to South Africa in 2010, appears in court in Cape Town, Reuters
Xolile Mngeni was convicted of the murder of Anni Dewani during a honeymoon visit to South Africa in 2010Reuters

The South African man, who admitted killing Anni Dewani on her honeymoon, has died in prison.

Xolile Mngeni, who was suffering from an incurable form of brain cancer, was sentenced to life in 2012, after being found guilty of the murder of the new bride.

He and his accomplice Mziwamadoda Qwabe hijacked Shrien and Anni Dewani's car as the newlyweds drove through the notorious Gugulethu township.

Qwabe told the court that he had been driving as Mngeni turned around and shot Anni in the neck, severing her spine and killing her.

He claimed that the killing had been ordered by Shrien Dewani to make it look like a street crime, alleging that the Bristol based businessman paid £1,400 for the hit.

Mngeni had been due to appear at the trial of Shrien Dewani, but was too unwell to take to the stand. He had been suffering from pineoblastoma since 2011, a rare and aggressive form of brain cancer.

After undergoing several rounds of chemotherapy, radiotherapy and surgery, he was deemed fit to stand and during his previous court appearances, he had appeared frail, using a frame to walk to the dock.

In July this year it was reported that he was to be freed from prison on compassionate grounds after 11 doctors signed a waiver saying his brain cancer was terminal, but the attempt failed after an outcry by Anni's family.

Anni Dewani's grieving father branded the drug dealer "a weak and spineless coward" for killing his "defenceless" daughter.

Qwabe, meanwhile, has been appearing for the prosecution at Shrien Dewani's trial.