Court orders NDPP to reinstate Mdluli charges

2013-09-23 12:03
Richard Mdluli (File, City Press)

Richard Mdluli (File, City Press)

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Pretoria - The national director of public prosecutions [NDPP] has been ordered to reinstate criminal charges and disciplinary action against former crime intelligence boss Richard Mdluli.

The North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria on Monday set aside an NDPP decision to withdraw criminal charges against him.

It also set aside a decision by the national police commissioner to reinstate Mdluli as head of crime intelligence.

"The decision made on February 2012 by first respondent [NDPP] in terms criminal charges of murder, kidnapping, intimidation and assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm and defeating the ends of justice is hereby reviewed and set aside," said Judge John Murphy.

"The decision made on 31 March 2013 by or on behalf of the [national police commissioner] whereof [Mdluli] was reinstated as head of criminal intelligence in the SA Police Service with effect from March 31, 2012 is hereby reviewed and set aside."

Without delay

Murphy said charges should be reinstated against Mdluli "without delay".

"The first and third respondents [the NDPP and head of specialised commercial crime unit respectively] are ordered to reinstate forthwith the criminal charges which were instated against [Mdluli] under case number 155/07/2011 and case number 340/02/99."

Also, the national police commissioner had to "without delay" take steps to reinstate disciplinary charges against Mdluli.

"The [national police commissioner] is ordered to reinstate disciplinary charges which had been instituted against [Mdluli] but were subsequently withdrawn on 29 February 2012 and to take such steps as are necessary to institute or reinstate disciplinary proceedings that are necessary for the prosecution and finalisation of the aforesaid disciplinary charges, diligently and without delay."

The application for a review and the setting aside of the decision to withdraw criminal and disciplinary charges against Mdluli was brought by lobby group Freedom Under Law [FUL].

The controversial former crime intelligence head was suspended amid charges of fraud and corruption, and charges relating to the murder of his ex-lover's husband.

Reinstated, then again suspended

An inquest cleared him of any involvement in the murder. The National Prosecuting Authority later withdrew charges of fraud and corruption. He was reinstated, but again suspended in 2012 pending FUL's application.

Murphy said: "The decision made on or about 5 or 6 December 2011, as the case may be, by the 3rd respondent [Head of specialised commercial crime unit] in terms of criminal charges of fraud, corruption, and money laundering instituted against [Mdluli] were withdrawn is hereby reviewed and set aside."

Laurance Hodes SC, for the NDPP argued in court earlier this month that instead of "marching off to court", FUL should have sought the review from the NDPP.

Hodes said the Mdluli matter had been provisionally withdrawn, which did not amount to a discontinuation of the prosecution process.

Decisions on whether to prosecute lay with the NDPP, not with courts, Hodes argued.
Read more on:    freedom under law  |  richard mdluli  |  judiciary

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