Louca case postponed

By Drum Digital
10 February 2014

The murder trial of Cypriot George Louca was postponed to February 18 in the Kempton Park Magistrate's Court on Monday.

Louca was told to use this time to find an attorney as he did not have one.

"I need to speak to my family and see what funds we have available to appoint an attorney," Louca said through an interpreter on Monday.

Louca said he needed between seven and 14 days for this.

Magistrate Prince Manyathi said the charges against Louca included murder and money-laundering.

Prosecutor JJ du Toit put further information on the court's record.

He said Louca, who had used the alias "Mr George Smith", was allegedly involved in four criminal cases at various courts.

The first related to a charge of possession of suspected stolen property.

It was alleged that on November 17, 2006, Smith was in possession of property estimated at R1.5 million belonging to Skye Footwear.

He was arrested on that day and later appeared in the Kempton Park Regional Court.

He was released on bail and failed to appear in court on April 14, 2010.

A warrant was then issued for his arrest, said Du Toit.

Information was then provided that Smith had been in hospital on April 14 after allegedly being assaulted.

Smith had to reappear in court on May 4, 2010 but did not arrive.

The second related to another charge of suspected stolen property. It was alleged that on May 10, 2007, Smith was in possession of property belonging to different companies to the value of R280,000.

He was released on bail but failed to appear in court on May 4, 2010.

The third related to defeating or obstructing the course of justice, and alleged racketeering and money laundering activities during July 2008 and December 2009. No arrest was made at the time, said Du Toit.

The fourth related to murder, and possession of a firearm and ammunition in connection with the murder of strip club owner Lolly Jackson.

Louca returned to South Africa on Sunday morning after losing his final appeal in the Supreme Court in Cyprus, the last of several attempts to evade extradition.

Louca fled South Africa after Jackson's murder at a house in Edenglen, east of Johannesburg, on May 3, 2010.

He allegedly phoned Gauteng crime intelligence boss Joey Mabasa and confessed to killing Jackson shortly after the murder.

Lt-Gen Solomon Makgale said on Sunday the Hawks were investigating a number of other cases to which Louca could possibly be linked.

Louca previously told the Sunday Times that he did not believe he would be granted a fair trial.

Du Toit told the court on February 8 this year, a letter was handed over to the South African government by the Cyprus government. He said it was not in English and had to be translated.

"Arrangements have been made to have it translated to English. It [the letter] will be made available at the next appearance," said Du Toit.

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