Nassif considered pleading guilty

2010-08-03 10:06

Former security boss Clinton Nassif considered pleading guilty to get a lighter sentence for the shooting of mining magnate Brett Kebble, the Johannesburg High Court heard today.

Defence counsel Laurence Hodes quizzed Nassif about a letter his attorney had written to Kebble’s business partner John Stratton in Australia asking him to consider brokering a deal with the National Prosecuting Authority. The subject line of the letter was “solution”.

Stratton’s attorneys replied requesting Nassif’s attorney, Tammo Vink, to refrain from contacting their client directly.

This took place mere weeks before the start of the trial of murder accused Glenn Agliotti.

Nassif said he had no knowledge of this.

Hodes asked him whether he would have pleaded guilty to resolve the matter, had all the other players agreed to do so.

Nassif said he “considered it” and he had asked his attorney to “look into it” because he did not know how it worked. He said he would have gone through with a plea bargain to “help out” Agliotti.

Hodes accused Nassif and his attorney of offering people plea bargains without even consulting with the prosecution first.

After questioning Nassif about previous drug charges on which he pleaded guilty in exchange for a lighter sentence, Hodes told him that he did not “give a damn about anybody” and that he would have done anything to save himself.

Nassif once again got worked up on the stand and said: “I don’t know what’s going on here.”

He demanded to know why Hodes was rehashing the drug charges for which he had already been charged and sentenced.

Hodes explained that Nassif was forced to obtain a plea bargain in the drug matter because he lost his section 204 indemnity after lying.

Nassif denied this saying he did not lie but rather omitted “detail”.

His attorney had advised him to take the plea bargain in the drug matter.

Nassif was testifying today in the case of Agliotti who was facing two counts of conspiracy to commit murder, a charge of attempted murder and one of murder.

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