Integrity of lead investigator questioned

2012-08-16 00:00

THE integrity of the chief investigator in the racketeering trial of former Mountain Rise station commissioner Hariram Badul and four others had been questioned by a senior colleague in 2010 in relation to another inquiry, the high court in Pietermaritzburg heard yesterday.

Colonel Anton van Zyl was confronted by defence advocate Shane Matthews, appearing for Lieutentant-Colonel Yunus Khan, with private notes he had typed on computer in March 2010, which bore the heading; “Suspicions on Sam Naidoo’s integrity and the team’s objectivity in our investigations and things I have identified in general”.

Colonel Sam Naidoo is allegedly the chief investigator in the Badul case.

In his plea at the start of the trial, Badul’s advocate, Christo van Schalkwyk SC, said the defence alleged there was a “history of animosity” between Badul and four police investigators, including Naidoo.

Van Zyl admitted yesterday the notes were his, but had to do with an entirely unrelated matter involving former Commissioner Tyrone Davis.

He said he did not know how the defence came to be in possession of his private notes, which had clearly been leaked to them, and added: “I don’t think I want to know”.

He said he stands by what he wrote at the time concerning a grudge Naidoo held against Commissioner Davis. However, it had nothing to do with the Badul case.

He wrote that Naidoo had an ongoing “personal issue” with Davis because Davis blocked his promotion in 2000.

“The reason why I’m putting pen to paper is that I’m sure that Sam is so filled with hatred towards Davis that he will do anything to get his way, even twist the justice system and also try and twist very senior officers’ minds.

“He has obviously lost focus of the objectivity required for a successful prosecution and so desires the arresting of Davis. He, knowing there is no strong case against this individual, is prepared for the SAPS to be red-faced and has no issue with definite civil claims which might follow.”

The issue related to work allegedly done at Davis’ house which, according to Van Zyl, was a state house, and everything in connection with the work had been above board.

• ingrido@witness.co.za

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