Agliotti ‘can’t remember’ dates he paid Selebi

2009-11-03 11:10

THE prosecution in the corruption trial of former national police

commissioner Jackie Selebi continued yesterday morning with its

cross-examination of the State’s star witness Glenn Agliotti.

Leading the re-questioning in the South Gauteng High Court in the

Johannesburg CBD, prosecutor Gerrie Nel wanted Agliotti to remember crucial

dates in which the convicted drug dealer handed money to Selebi in return for

favours.

Selebi’s legal counsel Jaap Cilliers SC objected to Nel’s

questioning saying the prosecutor was leading Agliotti to give “certain

answers”.

Agliotti told the court that he could not remember when he paid

Selebi R30?000 (about R239?000) after he met with former Hyundai boss Billy

Rautenbach in Harare, Zimbabwe.

Rautenbach was on the run from the law-enforcement agencies and

allegedly wanted Selebi’s assistance about whether an international arrest

warrant had been issued against him.

Agliotti took it upon himself to assist Rautenbach and charged him

a consultancy fee of $100?000 (about R795?000).

Cilliers objected to Nel’s question about the payment of the money

to Selebi from Rautenbach saying: “Mr Nel is trying to get a different answer

from the one already given.”

“I’m not. I’m just trying to clarify the answer, the witness could

be mistaken,” replied Nel.

Agliotti said he went to Harare, where Rautenbach had lived while

on the run from the law, on January 30 2006 and he “thinks” that was when

Rautenbach gave him the consultancy fee.

But Cilliers said that it could not be true because according to

Agliotti’s evidence during the cross-examination the money was handed before

that date. Agliotti could also not remember whether Kebble was still alive or

not when the money was paid to Selebi.

The judge presiding over the matter, Judge Meyer Joffe, ordered Nel

not to continue with the questioning because Agliotti said he could not

remember.

Cilliers then told the court that this was an important aspect of

the trial and that “we should not hide away from basic principles of

cross-examination. The state cannot cross-examine its own witness. It goes to

the roots of fairness of this trial.”

The trial continues today.

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