Time up for Blue Light Stalker

2010-12-04 00:00

DURBAN’S Blue Light Stalker, Ismail Sheik, should be in jail by midday on Monday after his appeal was struck off the roll by high court judges in Pietermaritzburg yesterday.

In terms of his bail conditions, ex-police reservist Sheik had 72 hours from the finalisation of the appeal yesterday to begin serving his sentence.

Sheik’s impassioned pleas and even tears as he begged for a further postponement yesterday left Judge Leona Theron and Judge Trevor Gorven unmoved.

The judges refused to adjourn the appeal again, having given Sheik an ultimatum previously that he had to come prepared to argue the appeal — with or without a legal representative — or it would be struck off.

Apart from inconvenience to the court, other interested parties were also “left up in the air” every time the case was adjourned, said Gorven.

Appearing in person yesterday, Sheik immediately told the judges that, despite great difficulty, he had “fully paid” all outstanding legal fees to his attorney by Wednesday, but was then told counsel could not argue the appeal on such short notice. “If only the appeal could be adjourned once more to say, Monday,” Sheik said he was confident he could get an attorney.

The application was refused.

Notwithstanding, Sheik continued to beg the judges to give him more time.

The case stood down briefly while he consulted with family members at court.

When he reappeared Sheik made another impassioned plea. He told the judges he has no record of his trial and “would not know what to say” if he had to argue the matter himself. “I don’t want to make a fool of myself,” he said at one stage.

His voice began to crack as he told the court; “I am a strong man but now I am in tears … I am on my knees.”

He said his trial, which cost R620 000 to date, was enormously taxing for him and he has been “tormented” ever since his conviction in 2007 as a result of “the world” knowing he was the Blue Light Stalker because his trial had even been publicised on the Internet.

The “stigma” stopped people giving him work as a landscaper. In desperation to raise money he had even “assisted people to train their dogs” for R200 per day, he said.

Sheik was convicted and sentenced by a Durban court in March 2007 for two counts of indecent assault, three counts of defeating the ends of justice and two counts of kidnapping arising from attacks on two women.

Numerous similar complaints were withdrawn due to lack of evidence, and police psychologist Dr Gerhard Labuschagne described him as a “serial sexual offender”.

Each of the victims was confronted near clubs by Sheik who was driving a white Volkswagen Citi Golf with a flashing blue light. After being forced to accompany him the women were molested.

Sheik was sentenced effectively to 21 years’ imprisonment.

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