Modack extortion case: Art of police ‘deception and infiltration’ discussed

2018-02-02 19:24
Major General Jeremy Vearey. (Caryn Dolley, News24)

Major General Jeremy Vearey. (Caryn Dolley, News24)

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Cape Town - Senior Western Cape policeman Major General Jeremy Vearey may have infiltrated the notorious numbers gangs, including the 26s and 27s, as he is adept at the "art of deception", a lawyer has suggested in the Cape Town Magistrate’s Court.

Rooshdeen Rudolph, who is representing an accused in the extortion case centred around suspected underworld kingpin Nafiz Modack, went into Vearey’s background and skills on Friday.

Vearey is the head of the cluster of Cape Town police stations. Officers within the Cape Town cluster arrested Modack and his co-accused.

Modack is accused of extortion and intimidation alongside Carl Lakay, Ashley Fields, Colin Booysen – suspected Sexy Boys gang boss Jerome Booysen’s brother - and Jacques Cronje.

They face charges relating to the nightclub security industry in that they allegedly took over security operations at clubs and restaurants, forcing owners to pay them.

For a detailed breakdown on what has been happening in the underworld nightclub security takeover, see News24's showcase Underworld Unmasked

The group was arrested on December 15 and lodged a bail application shortly afterwards.

Rudolph, who represents Lakay, continued cross-examining Charl Kinnear - a police colonel who is investigating fights in Cape Town clubs - on Friday.

Kinnear previously testified there was a recorded conversation in which Modack alleged Vearey was a 27s gang member who worked for a man named Red.

He had also testified that there was another recording of Modack in a meeting with Vearey and Russell Christopher, a former State Security Agency official who trained with Vearey in the ANC's intelligence structures prior to 1994.

The meeting happened on May 5, 2017.

'Art of deception'

On Friday, Kinnear elaborated on Vearey and Christopher, saying: "General Vearey and Russel Christopher were trained in intelligence by the British government". 

Rudolph put it to Kinnear that, when it came to infiltration, "your main source of artillery is the art of deception". 

But Kinnear said he had no knowledge of intelligence training and operations.

However, Rudolph pushed on. "These people are well trained in the art of deception," he said. 

He said Vearey could therefore have passed himself off as a member of the 26s or 27s gang.

Prosecutor Esna Erasmus then interjected, saying Rudolph was attacking the character of police officials.

Rudolph persisted, saying the idea of Vearey passing himself off as a gang member was not impossible or "ludicrous".

Kinnear responded by saying: "I would think that if General Vearey were to be part of all the gangs, the gangs would be utterly stupid (because) he's arresting them all the time".

'Gang infiltration could benefit SA'

Rudolph said he was not attacking Vearey’s character as it could be of the benefit to the country if he had infiltrated the 26s, 27s and 28s gangs.

But Kinnear said: "I do not agree at all."

Earlier on Friday, a shocking audio clip was played in the court.

In the clip, international steroid smuggler Brian Wainstein, who was murdered in his Constantia home in August last year, can be heard shouting at controversial businessman Mark Lifman.

Lifman, in the recording, initially tells another man "you guys" were told who to be careful of, and added that this included "that fat f##k", who the second man was on his way to see.

A third man's voice, believed to be that of Wainstein, then suddenly interrupts. This man sounds infuriated and shouts at Lifman, swearing several times.

"You're a f###ing dead bastard... I'm going to f##k you up... If I see you, I will destroy you. Do you understand me?" the third man shouts.

The clip then ends.

Previously in court it was alleged Lifman was controlling certain police officers and that he was part of a grouping which was opposed to a grouping headed by Modack.

READ: Mark Lifman controls the police, attorney alleges in court

In early January, during the bail application, Kinnear testified that a firearm was stolen during an altercation, which he said was the start of several underworld skirmishes, in Parow in March. 

The firearm, Kinnear had said, had turned up at advocate Pete Mihalik’s offices.

ALSO READ: Top advocate, murdered steroid kingpin involved in underworld dealings - claims surface in court

Mihalik, Kinnear had said, told controversial businessman Andre Naude - who in court has been aligned to Lifman - that he would return the firearm to its owner in exchange for R20 000. 

Kinnear testified that Wainstein had paid over this money and that the firearm was returned. 

Rudolph on Friday put it to Kinnear this testimony had been "artificially designed".

On Thursday he said the firearm matter involving Mihalik was unlikely because the people allegedly involved were "at loggerheads". The audio clip played in court on Friday was to back this up.

The bail application is expected to continue on Wednesday when the State is expected to re-examine Kinnear.

Read more on:    nafiz modack  |  cape town  |  crime

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