ATM bombings 10 case postponed

2015-11-10 10:40
(File, iStock)

(File, iStock)

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Pietermaritzburg - The trial of 10 men charged with bombing several ATM machines in KwaZulu-Natal in 2012 and 2013 was again postponed in the high court yesterday due to the men “chopping and changing” their lawyers.

State advocate Dorian Paver said the case was now set for trial from February 1 next year through to April.

He asked Judge Jacqueline Henriques to confirm with each individual accused if they required legal aid lawyers to ensure that the trial would go ahead on the next occasion.

One of the men, Menziwa Mdakane, told the judge yesterday that his family had paid a private lawyer R105 000 to represent him, but the lawyer was now “not answering his calls”. Mdakane said he would now also apply for legal aid.

The men, who are all in custody, face a total of 31 charges, including murder, robbery with aggravating circumstances, causing explosions, malicious injury to property, attempted murder, theft, and illegal possession of firearms and ammunition.

They are alleged to have been part of a syndicate responsible for setting off bombs at a number of ATMs in KwaZulu-Natal between September 28, 2012 and January 13, 2013, and stealing cash sums ranging from R115 000 to R855 000.

The bombings took place at Nottingham Road, Howick, Merrivale, Greytown and Utrecht.

They are charged with murdering police constable Vidhur Jadoo (37) in a shootout at Howick on November 7, 2012, and killing two civilians — Bongokuhle Nkosi and Sizwe Gule — at Utrecht on December 5 last year.

According to the state’s indictment, Jadoo was killed when he and other policemen pursued a bakkie with ATM bombing suspects in the Howick area.

The chase started on the Howick/Tweedie Road and continued on the N3 in the early hours of the morning. During the chase the attackers fired at the police, whose vehicle was hit a number of times.

Jadoo and a member of the SAPS Dog Unit, Livingstone Mpangase, were shot.

Jadoo died of a gunshot wound to his head, while Mpangase was seriously injured.

The two civilian victims were killed when the bombers struck a garage in Utrecht, holding up employees at gunpoint and robbing them of cash and cigarettes.

They also bombed the ATM and took R115 050 cash. Nkosi and Gule were shot dead after stopping their vehicle on the road near the garage.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  court

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