HEART'S GROWING FONDER: Austin Coetzee wants his wife, Petina's, bail relaxed
An elderly man whose wife allegedly hired a hitman to kill him has told the court he wants her back home.

The Kenilworth woman will know next month whether her bail conditions will be relaxed.

Austin Coetzee, 67, made representations to the State asking for bail conditions to be relaxed and criminal charges against his 44-year-old wife dropped.

He said he wanted her home because their kids were “suffering”.

Petina Coetzee stands accused of hiring an employee to murder her husband.

Police say she was nabbed in a sting operation in the parking lot of the Lansdowne train station after handing over an undisclosed amount of money to the “hitman”.

She was charged with conspiracy to commit murder and released on R30 000 bail.

The couple have been married for nine years and share a three-year-old son.

The accused has two older sons, aged 16 and 20, who live with the couple at their home in Kenilworth.

Petina’s lawyer, Asghar Mia, made an application in the Wynberg Magistrates’ Court yesterday to amend her bail conditions to allow her to return home.

The mother of three currently lives with relatives.

The couple, who did not speak to each other, again sat on opposite ends of the court’s public gallery, ahead of Petina’s appearance in the dock.

Petina is currently not allowed to go home, or have any contact with her husband.

In December, Petina was rearrested for breaking her bail conditions, after she talked to her husband. She was again released on bail.

The court previously heard that Austin wanted contact with Petina for the sake of their children and their business interests.

It is believed Petina runs a company that takes identity document photos near Home Affairs in the city.

Austin is a retired manager who previously worked at a well-known petroleum company.

A friend of the accused had claimed Petina might have been driven to murder as a result of being abused.

Mia said the State prosecutor needed time to study their application, and the matter was postponed to April 19.