Gallery guard appears in court

By Drum Digital
23 May 2012

The security guard who restrained one of the men who allegedly defaced a controversial painting of President Jacob Zuma at a Johannesburg art gallery appeared in court on Wednesday.

Paul Molesiwa, 36, was granted R1000 bail by the Hillbrow Magistrate's Court, police spokesman Colonel Vishnu Naidoo said.

The case was postponed to May 28.

The guard was filmed head-butting and flipping Louis Mabokela to the floor after he had smeared black paint on the "The Spear" in the Goodman Gallery.

Naidoo said Mabokela laid a charge of assault on Tuesday night.

A second man, Barend la Grange, who made a red cross over the painting was arrested with no apparent violence. According to e.tv's footage of the incident, he also did not appear to resist efforts by gallery staff to detain him.

The picture depicted Zuma with his genitals exposed.

The gallery stayed closed on Wednesday.

A third man, George Moyo, also appeared in court on a charge of malicious damage to property, after allegedly trying to spray paint the word "respect" on a wall outside the gallery.

All three were released on bail of R1000 each after appearing in the Hillbrow Magistrate's Court.

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