Krejcir alleges police torture while in custody

2013-11-25 00:00

RADOVAN Krejcir and his co-accused will appear in court today on charges of grievous assault and abduction in a case in which boiling water was allegedly poured over a man’s head.

But not everyone is happy with the arrest of one of South Africa’s alleged crime bosses. Sources in the investigating team whose names cannot be revealed say the sudden arrest on Friday evening may damage a larger investigation into the Czech’s affairs.

And Krejcir’s lawyers may yet get to turn the tables on the police after the constitutional rights of this illegal immigrant were violated when the police refused for 20 hours to tell his lawyers where he was being held.

Krejcir yesterday claimed that he was tortured while held in police custody. His lawyers have laid charges of attempted murder and assault with the intent to do grievous bodily harm at the Protea Glen police station in Soweto against the police officers involved.

Krejcir, who is under an 11-year sentence for fraud in his home country, is being investigated by a multi-disciplinary task team, including the Hawks, police detectives and crime intelligence for his alleged involvement in crimes that range from murder and abduction to drug trafficking.

Krejcir’s arrest on Friday was only for assault with intent to do grievous bodily harm and abduction, and was apparently done without consulting the rest of the Krejcir task team and without the sanction of police commissioner General Riah Phiyega, head of the detectives Lieutenant General Vinesh Moonoo and Hawks boss Lieutenant General Anwa Dramat.

Sister paper Beeld learned that the complainant claims he was abducted and boiling water was poured over his head. Police declined to confirm this, but said due to the seriousness of the assault, the charge may be changed to attempted murder.

The case was reported in June on the East Rand.

At a press conference on Saturday, Phiyega did not answer a direct question asking if she knew about the arrest, but said “the police arrested Krejcir, the police knew he was being arrested and I am part of the police”.

Phiyega described the arrest as a “big breakthrough” and said more arrests can be expected.

Phiyega as well as Beeld’s sources confirmed there was a legal warrant for Krejcir’s arrest, but his lawyer Eddie Classen denied this.

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