Court grants Lamoer and co a weekend away from jail

2018-05-11 17:47
Former Western Cape police commissioner Arno Lamoer (left) and his lawyer arrive at court for his corruption case. (Jenna Etheridge, News24)

Former Western Cape police commissioner Arno Lamoer (left) and his lawyer arrive at court for his corruption case. (Jenna Etheridge, News24)

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Retired Western Cape police commissioner Arno Lamoer, his longstanding businessman friend Saleem Dawjee and two former police officials, will spend their first weekend after being given jail terms for corruption, at home.

This was after the Western Cape High Court granted them each R10 000 bail on Friday, with conditions.

Judge Rosheni Allie felt it was in the interests of justice to grant them bail so they could consult with their lawyers and decide whether to launch applications for leave to appeal their sentences by noon on Monday.

She increased their bail from an initial R5 000 as she felt the stakes were much higher since there was no longer the presumption of innocence.

ALSO READ: Lamoer, former top cops must have known actions were corrupt - judge

"If there is an indication that a particular accused is not going to file an application for leave to appeal, then that is the end of bail and he would have to surrender himself to go back into custody," she said.

The men have to report to their local police stations by 10:00 every day, cannot leave the province or country without permission, and surrender their passports to police.

Allie had on Thursday chosen direct imprisonment over correctional supervision for Lamoer, Dawjee, and former brigadiers Darius van der Ross and Kollin Govender.

She said corruption was serious and had consequences for the police and the community it served.

Dawjee was sentenced to an effective six years in jail for corruption, fraud and defeating the ends of justice.

Lamoer also received an effective six years in jail. He was sentenced to eight years in prison, of which two years were suspended for five years, on condition that he was not convicted of corruption within that time.

Van der Ross and Govender effectively received sentences of two and four years in jail respectively for corruption.

Dawjee's business entity Towbars Cape was fined R60 000, of which R40 000 was suspended for five years.

National police commissioner, General Khehla John Sitole, welcomed the outcome as he believed it showed that no one was above the law, despite their position in the police.

"Government officials, particularly police men and women are constantly being warned of the consequences of engaging in corrupt behaviour and relationships and these latest convictions and sentencing are a stark reminder of those consequences", he said.

Relatives and friends, some using tissues to wipe away tears, packed the public gallery of the court on Friday morning to offer their support.

They waved to the men in the dock and shouted messages of support, including: "God is with you."

Van der Ross briefly collapsed before court started and appeared to be wiping away tears as he sat down.

The court later heard that he was withdrawing his application for leave to appeal along with an application for bail.

When Allie later asked whether he wanted to obtain bail, hisses of "yes" echoed from the gallery and he announced he would take up the offer.

The men were ordered to return to court on Monday to finalise their positions.

On Monday, the court will also hear an application by the Asset Forfeiture Unit (AFU) for a confiscation order against the group.

It is the AFU's case that the men benefited from the offences of which they have been convicted.

Read more on:    saleem dawjee  |  arno lamoer  |  cape town  |  crime

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