Selebi trial grinds to a halt

2009-12-01 19:05

Johannesburg - Former police commissioner Jackie Selebi's corruption case ground to a halt on Tuesday when the state security ministry took further legal action to prevent an ex-intelligence official from testifying.

Judge Meyer Joffe adjourned court until February 1 next year after the ministry's lawyer, Marumo Moerane said they would petition the Supreme Court of Appeal in a bid to prevent ex-intelligence official Barry Gilder from taking the stand.

Joffe made one last-ditch attempt to avoid the delay by asking the state and defence if they could not reach an agreement over the evidence Gilder would give in court.

After discussions between the two parties, prosecutor Gerrie Nel told the judge: "Although it's very close we failed to reach an agreement."

Joffe said on February 1 the court would determine how the trial would proceed further.

Both Moerane and Nel have undertaken to file the relevant papers with the SCA in January.

Moerane announced the decision to petition after Joffe turned down the ministry's request for leave to appeal his decision to compel Gilder to take the stand. Joffe instead instructed Gilder to testify in camera.

However the ministry want Gilder to be able to stay silent about a 2005 draft intelligence report national intelligence estimate - which contains one paragraph about allegedly untoward payments Selebi was receiving from slain mining magnate Brett Kebble.

Selebi is facing a count of corruption and another of defeating the ends of justice in connection with at least R1.2m he allegedly received from convicted drug trafficker Glenn Agliotti and others in return for favours.

- SAPA
Read more on:    barry gilder  |  jackie selebi trial
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