23 in Cape Town court for trespassing

2016-11-01 22:05
Magistrates court. (Duncan Alfreds, News24)

Magistrates court. (Duncan Alfreds, News24)

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Cape Town - A steady stream of dishevelled people appeared in the Cape Town Magistrate's Court on trespassing charges on Tuesday, after police swooped on an informal settlement built on Prasa property.

One after the other they gave Magistrate Aziz Hamid their reasons for being on the Passenger Rail Agency of SA’s property at the time of the police operation in Woodstock. These ranged from dropping off money for somebody, to running an errand, and visiting a boyfriend.

All denied living in the settlement called Masikane.

Standing in crumpled, dirt-speckled clothes, almost all opted to represent themselves. One woman admitted that she did not understand what was going on, or what she was entitled to.

“'I can't afford an attorney,” she said, and asked to tell her side of the story.

Hamid repeated that she was entitled to a Legal Aid lawyer, and one stepped up to her in the dock.

Those that denied living at the site were quizzed on where they actually lived. One man said simply that he slept rough on another Prasa property.

Hamid allowed them to leave without having to pay bail, at times making them repeat the date and time of their next appearance, to make sure they understood.

Western Cape police spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Andre Traut said 23 people were arrested at Masikane for trespassing.

Read more on:    cape town  |  court

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