Court allows O'Sullivan to fly to London

2016-07-06 17:21
Paul O'Sullivan. (File, Netwerk24)

Paul O'Sullivan. (File, Netwerk24)

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Johannesburg - Police desperately tried to keep Paul O'Sullivan in the country by revealing on Wednesday that they were investigating 10 different cases against him.

But this did not sway the Kempton Park Magistrate's Court, and it gave the forensic investigator permission to attend his daughter's birthday party in London this weekend.

O'Sullivan appeared in the court on the third day of his trial for contravening section 26B of the Citizenship Act. His advocate Barry Roux put an application before the court asking for a temporary relaxation in his bail conditions.

He asked to be allowed to fly to London for the party.

Prosecutor Jabulani Mlotshwa opposed the application, saying the State considered O'Sullivan a flight risk because he had numerous cases pending against him.

Police officer, Captain Bonisile Mkupa, listed six cases he was investigating against O'Sullivan: A Kempton Park case of extortion, fraud, forgery and uttering; a Pretoria Central case of corruption; a Johannesburg Central case of theft, corruption and extortion; an Alberton case of extortion and intimidation, a Bramley case of kidnapping; and a Midrand case of fraud.

O'Sullivan had also been subpoenaed to appear in a Randburg court next week on a charge of forgery.

Mkupa said a complainant in one of the cases was African National Congress councillor in Alberton, Neil Diamond.

No charges in other cases

Magistrate Wynand Nel asked if there were any other cases that were currently before court. Mkupa mentioned the SAA matter.

"But he wasn't even arrested on that one," Nel said.

The next witness, Warrant Officer Jooste Vlok, said he was investigating three cases: A Johannesburg central case of extortion, intimidation and theft; two cases of fraud, impersonating a police officer and unlawful arrest made against O'Sullivan and a woman from the defence force.

In one of the fraud matters there was a civil case against O'Sullivan for R6.8m.

All the cases were still in the investigation phase and no charges had yet been laid against O'Sullivan in any of them.

"This is not a schedule 5 or a schedule 6 offence," Roux said, referring to the Criminal Procedure Act.

"There is nothing to indicate to you that the accused would be a flight risk. It's a birthday. There is a ticket showing he is flying out and he is flying back. This is a statutory offence," Roux said.

Mlotshwa said all the cases opened against O'Sullivan were serious matters with prison sentences of 10 years or more.

"Can a person facing these charges, facing the threat of 15 years in prison really come back? Is the birthday of a child more important than the pursuit of justice?"

Not a flight risk

O'Sullivan said afterward that the only case that was before court at present was the SAA case and a case of fraud, which he intended fighting.

"All the others are pure hearsay and hypothesis. They relate to investigations I have done over the last few years and have been opened by people, many of whom have been arrested and charged."

Nel said in his judgment that he did not consider O'Sullivan a flight risk.

"Each and every accused appearing before the court is assumed to be innocent until proven guilty by the state," Nel said.

As far as he could see from the emails O'Sullivan had sent, the threats he had made were about his ongoing dissatisfaction with how things were being done in the country, "politically, whether in government or the police force".

He relaxed the investigator's bail conditions, allowing him to see his daughter.

The trial would continue in August.

Read more on:    saps  |  corruption
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