‘Victimised’ Breytenbach cleared of all charges

2013-05-27 12:37

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) “victimised” suspended senior state prosecutor Glynnis Breytenbach, who was today cleared of all disciplinary charges against her.

Advocate Selby Mbenenge, the chairman of Breytenbach’s disciplinary hearing, today found that the “guilt of the employee on the plethora of charges has not been proven”.

Mbenenge cleared Breytenbach on all 15 counts of improper conduct the NPA levelled against her.

Mbenenge also found that the NPA’s attempt to charge Breytenbach with bringing the NPA into disrepute by alleging in a Labour Court affidavit that Acting National Director of Public Prosecutions Nomgcobo Jiba suspended her to protect Richard Mdluli, amounted to “victimisation”.

Mbenenge said that disciplining an employee for challenging her suspension “constitutes victimisation within the definition of the Labour Relations Act”.

In a short statement read by Breytenbach’s attorney after the hearing, Breytenbach said she was “elated” despite the “unjustified attack” on her and the personal humiliation she had suffered.

“I intend, if allowed to, to take up the cases, which I was dealing with – and by this I mean all the cases that I was dealing with – upon my return to office,” said Breytenbach.

The charges against Breytenbach related to her conduct in the investigation of a criminal complaint in the mineral rights dispute between politically connected Imperial Crown Trading and Sishen Iron Ore Company.

Most of the complaints against Breytenbach relate to her conduct in the investigation of a criminal complaint by Sishen against ICT.

She was accused of aligning herself with the case against Sishen and acting without fear, favour or prejudice.

But Mbenenge accepted Breytenbach’s evidence that the investigation was still at a preliminary phase and that she hadn’t disregarded allegations of criminality made by ICT against Sishen.

Mbenenge said there was no evidence to suggest that Breytenbach had relenquished control of the drawing up of search and seizure warrants to advocate Mike Hellens, who acted for Sishen.

Mbenenge also found Breytenbach had established a valid expectation of privacy in relation to her NPA laptop.

She therefore did not act unlawfully when refusing to hand it over.

On charges relating to Breytenbach deleting information from her laptop, Mbenenge pointed out that the NPA had access to this information on their server all along.

Quoting words used by Breytenbach’s advocate, Wim Trengove, Mbenenge said Breytenbach had established that the NPA “trawled” through her inbox and had violated her right to privacy.

Breytenbach has maintained throughout the case that the charges against her were an attempt to derail the prosecution of suspended crime intelligence head Richard Mdluli.

City Press has previously reported on the connection between Mdluli and acting NPA director Nomgcobo Jiba.

Back in 2008, when Jiba was fighting her own suspension in the Labour Court, Mdluli made an affidavit in support of Jiba.

Jiba was facing disciplinary charges because she had allegedly driven a process to get Gerrie Nel, the prosecutor in the Jackie Selebi matter, arrested.

Nel was previously successful in prosecuting Jiba’s husband Booker Nhantsi on a charge of stealing trust funds from a client.

Nhantsi was pardoned by President Jacob Zuma in 2010.

Mdluli filed an affidavit on Jiba’s behalf, saying she had only been involved because she was requested by the police to assist them in the investigation.

The NPA was not immediately available for comment.

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


WATCH: Man films himself going down water slide upside down as things go very wrong…

What is at first an exciting tummy-turning adventure stunt, quickly turns into a scarily bad idea caught on camera. Take a look:


You won't want to miss...

WATCH: Conor McGregor: Notorious the trailer
Best date night restaurants in South Africa
WATCH: Ryan Reynolds offers fans a free tattoo in new Deadpool 2 teaser
Should you date your co-worker?
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.