The jury deciding the case of the Zimbabwean vet accused of sexually violating and murdering his 10-year-old niece has been sent home for the weekend.
The jury in the High Court at Christchurch began deliberating on Friday morning after four weeks of trial.
Justice Christine French sent them home late afternoon, telling them to avoid all media coverage of the trial, Radio New Zealand reported.
They will return on Monday to continue their deliberations.
The Crown says George Gwaze, 60, a qualified veterinarian, sexually violated Charlene Makaza, his niece, with either a body part or an object before murdering her in Christchurch in 2007.
But the defence says she died after an overwhelming infection which arose as a consequence of the HIV virus she had since birth.Gwaze was originally found not guilty in a 2008 trial but the Crown appealed the verdict and won a retrial.
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