Former spy boss claims conspiracy

2012-09-22 15:09

Mdluli maintains allegations are a police ‘plot’

Suspended spy boss Richard Mdluli says he “knows something” that those who are leading evidence against him in a murder inquest don’t: there really was a plan by top cops to depose him.

This was Mdluli’s deadpan reply to prosecutor Kholeka Gcaleka when she put it to him this week that a task team headed by State Law Adviser Enver Daniels found there was no plot against Mdluli.

“On that, I know something you don’t know,” said Mdluli, refusing to say anything further.

The former head of police crime intelligence was in court this week to defend himself in an inquest into the 1999 murder of Vosloorus man Oupa Ramokgibe.

Mdluli and three co-accused were arrested in connection with the murder, but all charges against them were dropped in February this year.

The inquest before Magistrate Jurg Viviers will determine the cause of Ramokgibe’s death and whether anyone can be held responsible.

A smartly dressed Mdluli, who arrived at court in a luxury car with the licence plate “1 GOD”, this week maintained there was a plot to oust him.

He said this was the “only reason” he could think of for the resuscitation of a 13-year-old murder investigation into him.

On Friday, Mdluli’s claim appeared to be supported by a slight-of-build East Rand detective, Johannes du Plessis, who was responsible for investigating the original murder claims against Mdluli in 1999.

In a shock revelation under cross-examination by Mdluli’s attorney Ike Motloung, Du Plessis confirmed he had been instructed by senior Hawks officer Major-General Shadrack Sibiya to make an affidavit with additional information in it.

He compiled this second affidavit in March last year, just weeks before Mdluli and four co-accused were arrested and charged with the murder.

Du Plessis’ first affidavit in the Hawks investigation, taken in December 2010, merely said he had followed up suspicions of Mdluli’s involvement in the murder, but had determined these were pure speculation.

Mdluli first outlined the conspiracy allegation in a letter he wrote to President Jacob Zuma and Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa last year.

He accused former police commissioner Bheki Cele, Hawks boss Anwa Dramat, Gauteng police commissioner Mzwandile Petros and detection services head Godfrey Lebeya of conspiring to remove him as the head of crime intelligence.

Lebeya also testified this week.

Under cross-examination by Motloung, he said Mdluli was arrested at about the same time Cele was implicated in tender irregularities for the leasing of police headquarters.

Motloung put it to Lebeya that “you, together with ... Cele and others, thought Mdluli stood a chance of being the next (police) boss and you connived against him”.

An agitated Lebeya replied that “an inquiry team was put in place by the minister to look into (those allegations). I think it indicated that such a conspiracy did not exist”.

Motloung said Lebeya had been “used very effectively” by Cele against another senior police official and that Mdluli was his “next target”.

But in re-examining Lebeya, prosecutor Gcaleka said the fact that the task team had found there was no conspiracy against Mdluli explained why “he didn’t want to answer about it”.

City Press understands Mdluli was called by police officials and asked to buy into the findings of the task team before they were made public.

At the close of proceedings on Friday, Magistrate Viviers said that in light of the evidence the inquest had already heard, there would be little need for Hawks investigating officer Kobus Roelofse to be cross-examined.

The case continues on Tuesday.

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