Rob Packham and his lawyer outside court. Photo: David Ritchie/African News Agency/ANA

Alleged wife killer Rob Packham admitted to having feelings for his former jolmeit just a day before his wife Gill, 56, went missing.

This was revealed at the Western Cape High Court on Monday as the couple’s daughter, Nicola, took the stand and spilled the beans on her father’s affair and marriage problems.

The much-anticipated murder trial got underway on Monday where Packham, 58, also faces charges of defeating the ends of justice after Gill’s charred remains were found in the boot of her green BMW at Diep River Train Station on 22 February last year.

The Constantia businessman and former Twizza boss appeared before Judge Elizabeth Steyn where he pleaded not guilty to the charges.

In her testimony, Nicola told the court that on the day her mother went missing, she was contacted by a secretary at the school where Gill worked, saying she could not reach her or Rob.

The young woman said she thought her parents may be at one of their weekly counselling sessions after she forced her father to “come clean” about his affair to her mother.

Nicola confessed that she was aware of the affair for several years but in October 2017 she insisted her dad tell Gill.

The couple then started seeing a counsellor and by February last year, they had renewed their marriage vows and Rob had given Gill a gold diamond ring in December.

When questioned about the last counselling session on 21 February, a day before Gill went missing, defence attorney Craig Webster asked whether it had been “positive”, and Nicola responded: “Yes and no. There was a discussion about disclosures. Mum was very upset.”

Later, State prosecutor Susan Galloway returned to this point, asking why Gill was upset.

Nicola said her dad had previously told her mom he did not have feelings for his jolmeit but during the last counselling session he confessed he did and this had upset Gill.

Rob’s affair with the woman, who is also a State witness, was brought under the spotlight in September last year when he was found out trying to contact her via emails and SMSes and even dropped flowers at her workplace.

In an email sent on 14 October, he said: “I am deprived. I crave intimacy, raw, primal sex... Keen?”

The judge raised his bail to R75 000 and added stricter conditions including a ban on electronic devices.

However, Packham’s bail was revoked in December when he was once again caught trying to contact his jolmeit’s friend and he was sent to Pollsmoor Prison for the duration of the trial.

The trial continues.

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