Court awaits Rodrigues' stay of prosecution judgment in order to set trial date

2019-05-09 13:28
Apartheid-era cop Joao "Jan" Rodrigues is back in the High Court sitting in Palm Ridge Magistrate's Court. (Sesona Ngqakamba, News24)

Apartheid-era cop Joao "Jan" Rodrigues is back in the High Court sitting in Palm Ridge Magistrate's Court. (Sesona Ngqakamba, News24)

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The criminal case against apartheid-era cop Joao "Jan" Rodrigues is facing further delays as the court awaits a judgment from the bench hearing his stay of prosecution application.

Rodrigues, 80, is accused of being involved in the murder of anti-apartheid activist and teacher Ahmed Timol.

He made a brief appearance in the Gauteng High Court sitting in the Palm Ridge Magistrate's Court on Thursday, where the State informed Judge Ramarumo Monama that the full bench hearing the civil matter had not yet communicated its judgment. 

READ: Timol murder case: Apartheid cop to hear fate on stay of prosecution

Timol was arrested in 1971 at the age of 29. The police who interrogated him at the time, including Rodrigues, said that he threw himself out of a window from the 10th floor of John Vorster Square, now the Johannesburg Central Police Station.

However, in 2017, Timol's family disputed this, leading to the National Prosecuting Authority opening an inquest which rejected the 1972 report which stated that Timol had committed suicide.

If Rodrigues’ application is successful, he will not be prosecuted.

The case was postponed to June 28, for the stay of prosecution application to be obtained.

If the judgment comes out before June 28, and rules that Rodrigues’ application is successful, then charges against him will be withdrawn. 

If unsuccessful, a trial date will be set prior to the appearance, State prosecutor Shubnum Singh said.

Rodrigues’ bail was extended until his next appearance.

Read more on:    joao rodrigues  |  johannesburg  |  courts
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