Judgment reserved till Friday in King Dalindyebo’s bail case

2015-10-14 15:56
King Buyelekhaya Dalindyebo

King Buyelekhaya Dalindyebo

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King Buyelekhaya Dalindyebo of the AbaThembu nation will have to wait until Friday to find out whether his application to have his R6000 bail extended was successful.

Judge Lusindiso Pakade heard the various legal arguments represented for and against the king’s bail extension today at the Mthatha High Court and decided to reserve his judgment on the matter to Friday.

Advocate Jaap Cilliers (SC), who was representing Dalindyebo, argued that the high court had an inherent jurisdiction to entertain the application by the king, saying an opposing view would be “absurd”.

This was against senior state prosecutor, Nigel Carpenter’s view. Carpenter, who opposed the application, said that the Mthatha High Court, as a lower court, was superseded by the decision of the Supreme Court of Appeals – which had already ruled on the matter and had sentenced the king to 12 years.

The king has said he would appeal this judgment in the Constitutional Court.

Cilliers, who had also been briefed to file the king’s Constitutional Court appeal, argued that Mthatha High Court Judge Sytze Alkema had originally convicted Dalindyebo of culpable homicide. Because this conviction was set aside by the appeals court, another court might find more mistakes. The state had charged him of murder.

He said if the high court judge could have made a mistake there were reasonable prospects for success for the king’s appeal at the Constitutional Court and that more mistakes could be found by the judges at the Constitutional Court.

“On appeal in the SCA both the sentencing and conviction of culpable homicide had been set aside. That, my Lord, just illustrates the fact that courts sometimes do make mistakes – that’s human my Lord. That is the very reason why a developed legal system like our own provides for an elaborate appeal system,” Cilliers said.

Cilliers said there was no reason to believe that Dalindyebo was a flight risk and that denying him the bail extension was not in the interest of justice, given that his bail would lapse anyway if he was not granted leave to appeal at the Constitutional Court.

But Carpenter disagreed saying there were no prospects for Dalindyebo’s case to succeed at the Constitutional Court and that therefore the king should start serving his sentence.

The state also blamed Dalindyebo for dragging out the case. From its commencement in 2002, the case should have taken only six months to conclude but because of Dalindyebo’s delaying tactics, which included 34 postponements as a result of him changing legal representatives, it dragged on.

Carpenter said it was of Dalindyebo’s making that the appeal process took six years – from 2009 to 2015 – to be concluded and argued that he foresaw a similar situation in the Constitutional Court process.

“His history is that of delay, he always changes legal representatives in order to delay proceedings. Six judges rejected his version; there is very little prospect of success at the Constitutional Court. He is only entitled to 14 days. Once that lapses he should go to jail. He is a convicted person,” Carpenter said.

The king is out on R6000 bail for his 2009 conviction for various serious crimes ranging from culpable homicide, kidnapping, arson, and assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm to defeating the ends of justice.

He was initially sentenced by Alkema to 15 years in 2009 but appealed at the Supreme Court of Appeals in Bloemfontein.
His case was heard by five judges at the appeals court in August. Dalindyebo was acquitted on the culpable homicide charge, which carried a 10-year imprisonment, and got a reduced sentence of 12 years.
Cilliers indicated in court today that he would file papers at the Constitutional Court next week for the king’s leave to appeal. 
Read more on:    buyelekhaya dalindyebo

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