Charges dropped against Queen Victoria vandal

2015-04-13 21:04
An image captured on Friday morning of the vandalised Queen Victoria statue in Port Elizabeth. (<a href="" target="_blank">Gerida, Twitter</a>)

An image captured on Friday morning of the vandalised Queen Victoria statue in Port Elizabeth. (Gerida, Twitter)

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Port Elizabeth - The EFF member who was arrested for the vandalism of the Queen Victoria statue was released and the charges dropped against him due to insufficient evidence.

The 24-year-old has been identified by local media as EFF Regional Science, Technology and Education officer, Paul Walsh.

Eastern Cape police spokesperson, Sandra Janse van Rensburg, confirmed Walsh had been arrested this Monday after handing himself over to the police in the presence of his attorney.

He was charged with malicious damage to property, as well as being in contravention of the heritage act.

His arrest followed despite the EFF distancing themselves from the vandalism last week.

Janse van Rensburg said Walsh had appeared briefly in the Port Elizabeth Magistrates Court on Monday afternoon, but was released and the charges dropped due to insufficient evidence.

When contacted for comment, deputy chairperson for the Nelson Mandela Bay region, Bo Madwara, said he could not give immediate comment on the matter.

The Queen Victoria statue, which has stood outside the city’s Main Library since 1905, was covered in green paint last Thursday.

Video footage captured from CCTV cameras around the city centre show a man throwing paint at the statue just after 23:00.

The CCTV footage has been handed over to the police forensics team and the statue has been covered with a tarpaulin by the Nelson Mandela Bay municipality until it can be cleaned.

Read more on:    eff  |  port elizabeth  |  monuments debate  |  crime

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