Prosecutors to return to work

2010-04-05 11:30

Johannesburg - Three senior prosecutors who were set to move to lower courts will return to their offices on Tuesday, The Star reported on Monday.

The three were among 14 prosecutors reassigned to other tasks last week by National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) boss Menzi Simelane.

The NPA said they were redeployed for operational reasons.

The redeployment of the three advocates was stopped after talks between the NPA and the Public Service Association (PSA), The Star reported.

Deputy Director of Public Prosecutions Retha Meintjes, George Baloyi and Connie Erasmus were told last week to move to positions as prosecutors at magistrate's courts around Tshwane from Tuesday.

The Star reported it was not clear if the same decision had been taken for Andre Lamprecht, the chief prosecutor of the Soweto and West Rand Magistrate's Courts.

Linked to Jub Jub case

Last week Lamprecht's union representative said his sudden removal from his post could be linked to his refusal not to oppose bail in the "Jub Jub" "drag racing" case.

Molemo "Jub Jub" Maarohanye' and co-accused Themba Tshabalala were charged following the deaths of four school pupils in an alleged drag racing accident.

Lamprecht was asked verbally not to oppose bail, but would not do so without receiving the request in writing, which he did not receive.

However, NPA spokesperson Mthunzi Mhaga at the time denied the move had anything to do with the Jub Jub case.

"It is simply part of a restructuring process meant to ensure that we have the best, skilled and competent and experienced, prosecutors at all court levels," he said.

PSA spokesperson Manie de Clercq told the Pretoria News on Sunday that the NPA had agreed verbally that the advocates did not have to report for duty on Tuesday to their new assignments.

"We are waiting for written confirmation, but we accept that we will probably only receive it on Tuesday when their offices open again," he was reported as saying.