News24

Fugitive denies paying top cop

2010-08-29 10:16

Johannesburg - Fugitive Czech billionaire Radovan Krejcir says that the head of police crime intelligence in Gauteng, Major-General Joey Mabasa, was a man he could turn to "for help...in a difficult situation".

In an interview with Rapport, Krejcir said he was introduced to Mabasa by his lawyer who told him that "this is the crime intelligence chief and if you need some help, like you are in a difficult situation and cannot get hold of me or want to deal with the police directly, this is the person you must deal with."

He denied suggestions that Mabasa was on his payroll and described Mabasa as "the most honest policeman you could meet".

The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) will on Monday launch a review application in the Johannesburg High Court in a bid to revive efforts to have Krejcir extradited to the Czech Republic.

Questions about Mabasa's relationship with Krejcir emerged in the wake of the murder of strip-club king Lolly Jackson in May. Both Jackson and George Smith - the man alleged to have shot him - were closely linked to Krejcir.

Smith - also know as George Louka - was an habitual drug user who had worked as an informant for police. Shortly after Jackson's murder, Smith called Mabasa and confessed to killing Jackson.

Despite a massive police manhunt, Smith vanished.

Co-directors

In June, the Mail & Guardian reported that Krejcir's wife, Katerina Krejcirova, and Mabasa's wife, Dorcas, had become co-directors of a company called Radlochron in October 2009.

According to the company's registration office, Dorcas Mabasa has since resigned.

Mabasa claimed at the time that he and his wife had been separated "for the past 15 years".

Krejcir told Rapport that Radlochron "was never open, never active and never had one deal".

"I never met Mabasa's wife. My wife met her separately from me. Mabasa's wife was a dealer in energy drinks and that was the plan for this company. But it never did one deal.

"My wife ended up with a beauty salon in Pretoria and we have a small, nine-month-old baby, so she is too busy to do something else."

Krejcir said he always met Mabasa at his lawyer's offices in central Johannesburg and that Mabasa had helped him when a Russian hit squad arrived in South Africa to kill him.

Gave money

Krejcir said he contacted Mabasa "all the time when I need some help and there was something funny (going on) such as when people came here from the Czech Republic to kidnap me."

Krejcir dismissed claims contained in a dossier compiled by private investigator Paul O'Sullivan that he had paid off Mabasa.

In a statement given to O'Sullivan, a gold refiner and dealer who once had business dealings with Krejcir, Juan Meyer, claimed to have been present at two meetings where "Radovan gave money to Mabasa".

"The two times I saw Radovan hand cash over, was at the Michel Angelo (sic) hotel, in the smoking room...It was never told to me why Mabasa was being paid or what he was doing for it. I think it was done in my presence to 'brag' to show how powerful he, Radovan, was."

Meyer - who is threatening civil and criminal action against both Mabasa and Krejcir - said Krejcir claimed Mabasa was his "new business partner in the gold-refining business".

Meyer alleges that Krejcir and Mabasa are behind a campaign of harassment which has seen him arrested on "trumped-up charges".

He claims the campaign began after an investment and money-laundering deal with Krejcir turned sour.

Most recently, Meyer was detained at OR Tambo International Airport after returning from a business trip to Zimbabwe on outstanding theft warrant. It later emerged the warrant had been cancelled four years ago.

Transported gold

Meyer - the managing director of Pan African Refineries - was also arrested in May on charges of illegally transporting 30kg of gold.

Meyer also claims there have been attempts on his life. The giant bodybuilder now never leaves home without five bodyguards in tow.

Krejcir responded this week: "I swear on my son's life, 99% of what is in that statement is lies, a fabricated story, nonsense.

I never gave Mabasa money. Mabasa was never present at some meeting. The value of (Meyer's) information is zero. It is the same as if I go to a police station now and make an affidavit saying you are planning to kill Zuma."

Attempts to contact Mabasa were unsuccessful.