No scope for appeal: Waterkloof lawyer

2011-12-20 17:36

Pretoria - The lawyer for two of the so-called "Waterkloof 4" said on Tuesday that she considered their release under correctional supervision as finalised and with no scope for an appeal.

Jenny Brewis, representing Reinach Tiedt and Gert van Schalkwyk, was reacting to the department of correctional services' earlier statement that it wanted to appeal the decision by the Zonderwater parole board.

"It wasn't me that brought this about. Do they want to appeal against themselves? How do they want to appeal against themselves?" asked Brewis.

She said that she was of the opinion that "the matter is finalised".

The commuting of the sentence as recommended by the parole board and confirmed by the courts was not an action that her clients had undertaken, but had been carried out by the department itself, said Brewis.

She said, therefore, she did not believe that there was any scope for the department to make an appeal.

Contempt of court

Correctional services spokesperson Zacharia Modise said earlier on Tuesday that Brewis had agreed not to pursue contempt of court charges against two correctional services officials.

She confirmed this, adding that the department would have to pay the legal costs.

They had initially sought to pursue charges against the two officials after the department failed to abide with a Pretoria Regional Court decision to have Van Schalkwyk and Tiedt's sentences commuted to house arrest.

But the pair were released on Monday after the agreement was made.

However, this did not mean that the department could not appeal their release under correctional supervision.

"Corrections is going to appeal this matter [the commuting of the sentences]. The agreement does not affect our decision to appeal," said Modise.

Court wrangle

Van Schalkwyk was released on Monday together with Tiedt, following a court wrangle over the decision by the parole board to commute their 12-year jail terms to house arrest. They can apply for parole at a later stage.

Schalkwyk and Tiedt were imprisoned along with Christoff Becker and Frikkie du Preez in 2008 for killing a homeless man who was never identified, and assaulting another at a park in Pretoria in 2001.

Bekker and Du Preez, who are serving their sentences in Pretoria Central, had not been released and there was no word as to whether they would be.

Modise said that no applications for Bekker and Du Preez had so far been received or were being processed by the Pretoria Central Prison parole board.

He said the department would oppose any decision to commute the sentences of Bekker and Du Preez.

Modise could not say when the appeal against Van Schalkwyk's and Tiedt's sentences would be lodged.

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