Mdluli and co's charges 'embargoed'

2015-05-20 14:41


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Pretoria - The charge sheet relating to former crime intelligence boss Richard Mdluli and two colleagues has been updated and embargoed by order of the Commercial Crimes Court in Pretoria on Wednesday.

''Nobody should be allowed to possess the charge sheet or publish its contents,'' said Mdluli's lawyer, Ike Motloung in his successful submission to Magistrate Martin Van Wyk.

He said he had received a new charge sheet last week on a CD and ''after a quick perusal'' his instructions were that it be for the eyes of his clients, the lawyers and the magistrate only.

Prosecutor Arno Rossouw said the matter was in the public interest and he did not want to be seen to be interfering with the public's right to know, but he would accept whatever the court decided.

''The charge sheet can change at any time. Knowing the general public it could be prejudicial as far as the accused is concerned as regards confidentiality," said Van Wyk, granting that request.

Mdluli was in good spirits as he waited in the dark passage outside the cramped court, and later he and his co-accused Heine Barnard had extra company in the dock in the form of former Major General Solomon Lazarus.

Surprise appearance

Earlier, Lazarus had made a surprise appearance after handing himself over for arrest on Tuesday morning to be charged with five counts of corruption and one of theft relating to his tenure as a policeman, also in the crime intelligence division.

He was dismissed in 2014 and is currently a consultant. The charges relate mainly to the purchase of business class air tickets.

He was released on R2000 bail and went to the court next door for his case to be joined with Mdluli and Barnard's case.

According to the last appearance of the two, the case relates to the alleged use of a crime intelligence slush fund.

Before the order was made, the court heard that the updated charge sheet is in terms of the Combating of Organised Crime Activities Act.

Prosecutor Arno Rossouw had also explained that the declassification of documents, which started in August 2013 and a new process which started in February, still needed to be finished and he hoped this would be done by the end of this week, or by next week. He understood that Mdluli would also make an application for further particulars on the charges.

He said he had managed to ''secure'' the identities of people mentioned in two pages of the lengthy charge sheet.


The case was postponed to July 6 for further matters to be finalised ahead of the trial date of August 17 to 19.

In the corridor afterwards, Lazarus was seen going over to an office to pay his bail and officials seen looking for the charge sheet to make sure it was secured.

Mdluli and Barnard's bail of R2000 was extended.

The prosecutor had hoped that Lazarus's bail would be a minimum of R10 000 which is expected in a corruption case involving a policeman.

Read more on:    pretoria  |  crime  |  corruption

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