Mdluli ignores subpoenas

2014-03-02 14:00

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Lawyers struggle to disprove evidence that Mthethwa knew about corruption.

Lawyers for Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa say they cannot disprove evidence he and top generals knew about fraud and corruption in the police’s crime intelligence unit but did not act on the knowledge.

Lawyers have also acknowledged before the Labour Court they have no available defence against evidence that suggests the unit’s members have allegedly been involved in murder, torture, fake hijackings and cover-ups.

They were forced to concede these points after suspended police crime intelligence head Lieutenant General Richard Mdluli gave his bosses, Mthethwa and national police commissioner Riah Phiyega, the middle finger by ignoring an order to testify in his colleagues’ defence in the Labour Court in Joburg.

City Press broke the story last year of how crime intelligence auditor Colonel Johan Roos was allegedly harassed and victimised after he claimed to have uncovered corruption in the unit and reported it to police management.

Roos declared a dispute and took the police, Phiyega and Mthethwa to the Labour Court for allegedly victimising him.

He submitted a 68-page dossier to the court that contains official and secret police memos, emails, documents, letters and affidavits he says proves his case.

In his testimony before the Labour Court two weeks ago, Roos told Judge Robert Lagrange of his efforts to expose Mdluli and his colleagues.

Roos testified that he was investigated by police counterintelligence agents, that his house was broken into and that his career had been destroyed.

Police lawyers, on behalf of Phiyega and Mthethwa, subpoenaed Mdluli to testify against Roos and refute his allegations.

Although under suspension, Mdluli is still a serving officer and falls directly under Phiyega’s command and control – which he has seemingly ignored.

According to a statement from the Boksburg sheriff on the East Rand, which City Press has seen, he took the subpoena to Mdluli’s Dawn Park home on February 4.

Mdluli wasn’t home but workers phoned him, the sheriff said. Mdluli instructed them not to receive the subpoena.

The sheriff explained the document to the workers and left a copy on the gate, which he says means it was properly and legally served.

The penalty for ignoring a subpoena may be a fine or imprisonment for contempt of court.

No action has been taken against Mdluli.

Police senior counsel William Mokhari then informed Lagrange that his clients were unable to present any evidence to contest the veracity of Roos’ testimony.

When contacted for comment, Mdluli’s attorney Ike Motloung said he “did not understand” what City Press was talking about and refused to “act as a messenger of your old and tired allegations of corruption”.

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