Rautenbach wanted to ‘bomb’ Selebi

2010-04-16 10:52

Former national police commissioner Jackie Selebi said there was no way he could have assisted fugitive Billy Rautenbach with his run-ins with the law.

Selebi, who finished giving his evidence-in-chief this morning in the South Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg, was cross-examined by state prosecutor advocate Gerrie Nel.

The former top cop claimed that there was no way he could have assisted Rautenbach because the two were on the opposite side.

Asked to explain what he meant by “opposite side”, Selebi told the court of a 1985 incident in the Zambia capital Lusaka, where the governing ANC was set to hold its conference.

“I could tell the story if I can ask this court to be cleared. But I can tell it anyway. Rautenbach and some others had arranged to explode a bomb at that meeting. I was a target and others who were there. He was on the other side,” he said.

Selebi also said that the state’s star witness, Glenn Agliotti, had informed him that former national director of public prosecutions Bulelani Ngcuka had allegedly solicited a bribe from Rautenbach “to make his troubles go away”.

Rautenbach was then facing tax evasion charges following his role as former director of South Korean vehicle manufacturer Hyundai in South Africa.

After learning about the Ngcuka bribery story, Selebi told the court that he asked Agliotti to organise a meeting with Rautenbach’s lawyer, James Tidmarsh. Selebi, Agliotti and Tidmarsh met at the latter’s hotel room and discussed the said claims.

Selebi said he met Tidmarsh because, as a law enforcement officer, he wanted to get information and then take the necessary steps.

“They wanted their story (to be) heard by a higher office. I was (only) going to check the information about Ngcuka and then take action,” he said.

The trial continues.

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