Selebi sold his badge

2010-08-02 20:05

Johannesburg - Former national police commissioner Jackie Selebi sold his badge and betrayed his own struggle history and that of his comrades, State prosecutor Gerrie Nel said ahead of sentencing on Monday.

"He sold his badge," said Nel in a wincingly no holds barred statement in the South Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg.

Nel, who said a 15-year sentence would be light, said "now the accused through his own actions has broken everything he did".

Nel said Selebi had only himself to blame if he was made an example of.

Defence counsel Jaap Cilliers said Selebi had suffered enough by falling publicly from one of the highest positions in the country to his present situation of degradation.

'One of the greatest falls'

This should be taken into consideration when deciding whether to impose the 15-year sentence on him for corruption, his counsel said in argument for mitigation of sentence.

"The fall that the accused already had must have been one of the greatest falls known in our legal history," said Cilliers.

Selebi was financially destroyed, had suffered emotionally and "the mind boggled" as to the extent of his downfall. His legal costs would destroy him but he could afford a fine of up to R500 000.

He was now only earning a R20 000 monthly pension.

Cilliers said that there was not one South African who did not know what had happened to Selebi.

Judge Meyer Joffe said he would "endeavour" to hand down Selebi's sentence at noon on Tuesday.

Selebi was found guilty in July of corruption.