Pretoria bank bomb threat: Former Scorpions investigator tells court he wants to plead guilty

2019-09-19 11:26
Menlyn Maine shopping centre sealed off following a bomb threat and attempted robbery at a bank. (Alex Mitchley, News24)

Menlyn Maine shopping centre sealed off following a bomb threat and attempted robbery at a bank. (Alex Mitchley, News24)

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The man who allegedly tried to rob a bank at the Menlyn Maine shopping centre in Pretoria on Tuesday has told the Pretoria Magistrate’s Court that he wants to plead guilty. 

Ekhardt Albertus Mostert, also known as Mossie Mostert, made his first appearance in court on Thursday morning. 

READ | Pretoria mall: Man who tried to rob bank donned a wig, sprinkled fake bomb with gunpowder

Mostert told the court that he wanted to defend himself and then, without being asked to, he said that he was pleading guilty. 

Mostert, who is a former investigator of the now-defunct Scorpions, was told that the charges he is facing are serious and that if convicted he could face a life in prison. 

Mostert said he understood this, but he would still like defend himself. 


State prosecutor Kagisho Rancho asked for a short postponement so that he could determine if the regional court could take his plea or if the plea would have to be heard in the High Court. 

News24 previously revealed that Mostert was the man arrested at Menlyn Maine in Pretoria on Tuesday after allegedly trying to rob an Absa bank. 

READ | Pretoria mall evacuated after bomb threat, man who demanded 'large sum' arrested

According to the police, he was believed to have entered an Absa bank at around 11:15 and walked straight to a bank teller, before handing over a note.

He had disguised himself, wearing a wig, and entered the bank with a device, which he later revealed to be a bomb.

Police spokesperson Captain Colette Weilbach said the note stated that he had a bomb and that he wanted an undisclosed amount of money. The bank teller then pressed the silent alarm.

"Security immediately reacted and evacuated the whole shopping centre. The police responded and arrested the man inside the bank. A firearm was confiscated," Weilbach said.

The police's bomb squad and K9 units were called to the scene to inspect the device. While the sniffer dogs initially reacted positively to the device, the bomb disposal unit found that it was not a bomb but that the man had sprinkled gunpowder on the device to give it authenticity.

News24 also revealed that two sources, who are former colleagues of Mostert said he had allegedly been suffering financially.

Since leaving the directorate of special operations (the Scorpions) and police, Mostert had been plying his trade as a private investigator at a company called Mostert Security Solutions.

Mostert is facing charges of attempted bank robbery and terrorism.

Read more on:    absa  |  pretoria  |  crime

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