Waterkloof lawyers won't charge prisons

2011-12-20 12:31
Pretoria - Lawyers for two of the so-called "Waterkloof Four" have agreed not to pursue contempt of charges against correctional services officials, the department said on Tuesday.

Spokesperson Zacharia Modise said an agreement had been reached with the legal teams of Gert van Schalkwyk and Reinach Tiedt not to pursue contempt of court charges against two senior Zonderwater Prison officials.

They had initially sought to pursue contempt of court 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.

Van Schalkwyk was released on Monday together with Tiedt, following a court wrangle over the decision by the Zonderwater 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, 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.

He could not say when the appeal against Van Schalkwyk's and Tiedt's sentences would be lodged.
Read more on:    gert van schalkwyk  |  reinach tiedt  |  prisons

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