Lolly 'killer' calls me - Krejcir
Julian Rademeyer, Beeld
Johannesburg - The man who allegedly gunned down Teazers boss Lolly Jackson earlier this year is hiding out in Cyprus and has been in regular telephonic contact with billionaire Czech fugitive Radovan Krejcir.
“George Smith is alive and living in Cyprus,” Krejcir – who currently lives in Bedfordview - told Beeld during an interview this week. “There were rumours that I killed him, that I put him in the Vaal Dam. It is not true.
“George calls me quite often, sometimes 20 times a day. At the weekend he kept me awake.”
An associate of Krejcir's, Jerome Safi, also confirmed the calls this week.
Jackson was gunned down on May 3 after visiting Smith, also known as George Louka, at a house in Kempton Park.
Krejcir – who has long been linked by Czech authorities to organised crime syndicates, a claim he vehemently denies – was a close friend of both Smith and Jackson.
Krejcir arrived in South Africa in April 2007 and was arrested by police and intelligence agents on an Interpol “red notice”. Police, at the time, described Krejcir as an “international fugitive” and said he was wanted in the Czech Republic on charges of fraud and conspiracy to commit murder.
Met in jail
On Monday, prosecutors will attempt to revive efforts to have him extradited when they lodge an application in the South Gauteng High Court for the review of a magistrate's court decision that allowed him to remain in the country.
It was while he was in custody after his arrest that Krejcir met Smith. Smith had been arrested for theft and the two men shared a cell at the Kempton Park police station.
“George was the first person I met in South Africa. We got released about the same time and he showed me around and gave me advice where to buy a house.”
But Smith's habitual drinking and drug abuse gradually soured their relationship.
According to Krejcir, Czech intelligence agents have been in contact with Smith and have attempted to persuade him to implicate Krejcir in Jackson's murder.
Krejcir says he is in possession of an affidavit made by Smith in which he claims he was offered €15 000 (about R140 000) and help getting immunity from prosecution if he “signed a statement saying that Radovan killed Lolly Jackson or sent Smith to kill Lolly Jackson”.
“They want to use that statement against me to get me extradited,” Krejcir claimed this week.
Krejcir said he had given South African police the number Smith called him from.
'I am not hiding anything'
“I don't want to be involved in anything funny. They must record all my messages and phone calls. I am not hiding anything.
“If I really sent George to kill Lolly and he is as drunk as he is every night and under the influence of drugs he will probably say something on the phone.”
According to Krejcir, Smith refuses to discuss why he allegedly shot Jackson.
Krejcir said Smith and Jackson had a tempestuous relationship and did “a lot of deals and very secret things together”.
“One week they were enemies, the next they were friends.”
According to Krejcir, Jackson used Smith as his muscle, sending him to “punish one guy” and also to “destroy” a News Café in Kensington, owned by businessman Michael Kalymnios who had fallen for one of Jackson's Ukrainian strippers.
“I always said there must be money or women involved in Lolly's murder. I don't think there was a woman involved. I don't know if George tried to kill Lolly or Lolly tried to kill George. Only those two know what happened and unfortunately Lolly is not alive to tell us. There were no cameras and no witnesses.”