We will burn this place down - How Modack allegedly tried to take over Gauteng clubs

2018-02-08 09:19
Suspected underworld kingpin Nafiz Modack takes a selfie with a firearm. This image forms part of an exhibit in his bail application. (Supplied)

Suspected underworld kingpin Nafiz Modack takes a selfie with a firearm. This image forms part of an exhibit in his bail application. (Supplied)

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Cape Town – Suspected underworld kingpin Nafiz Modack, who is facing extortion and intimidation charges in Cape Town, is set to be arrested yet again – this time for allegedly threatening club owners in Johannesburg. However, the arrest is only expected to be made when his bail application in the Cape Town extortion case is finalised.

Details of these threats, including one in which Modack and a co-accused allegedly threaten to burn down a Sandton club, are contained in a statement by Vincent Andre Saunders, a detective warrant officer stationed at Gauteng’s provincial investigating unit focusing on serious and violent crimes.

This statement was read out in the Cape Town Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday during the bail application of Modack and his four co-accused, who are also charged with extortion.

'Feuding brothers' and alleged gang links

Another statement by a senior Hawks officer was also read out – this detailed sensational claims about how two brothers, allegedly linked to notorious Cape Town-based gangs, were fighting each other and how one lost out on money in a drug transaction.

It also detailed how a group of 63 people, aligned to the numbers gangs in Cape Town, tried to get to the Cape Town city centre in April 2017 to attack clubs that those under Modack were providing security to.

Modack’s legal team is expected to respond to the allegations, including those relating to Gauteng clubs, against Modack when the application continues on Monday.

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

Saunders, in his statement, said that in December 2017 he had received an enquiry involving allegations of extortion, intimidation and death threats. While investigating this, a criminal case was opened.

In the Cape Town matter, Modack is facing the same allegations.

He 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 shortly afterward lodged an application to be released on bail.

Saunders’ statement said: "I intend to charge and arrest Nafiz Modack and Jacques Cronje as soon as this current bail application is finalised."

Gauteng clubs 'targeted'

He said Cronje, who worked for Modack, had visited several nightclubs around Gauteng.

Cronje, according to Saunders, had spoken to owners or managers of establishments to try and get them to enter into a contract so they could be provided with security.

Saunders said Cronje and Modack recruited bouncers at various clubs to get easy access to these clubs.

"When the owner or manager refuses their services, they were then threatened by Nafiz Modack and Jacques Cronje," he said.

The manager of the establishment The Grand, in Sandton, had opened a criminal case.

Saunders said that according to the owner and manager, Cronje had contacted them wanting to take over security at the club.

Harassment allegations

The manager said they already had security and were therefore not interested.

"Cronje refused to take no for an answer and started harassing the manager and owner," Saunders said.

Modack and Cronje allegedly sent them threatening SMSes, saying they would burn down The Grand.

According to Saunders, Modack had called the manager and shouted: "Phillips, you must get your f***ing boere ready with their guns, we are on our way and there is going to be fireworks".

A message had also been sent from Modack’s phone.

'I will get all your cops arrested'

This message, according to Saunders, read: "Phillips you motherf***er I will get all ur cops arrested watch me u f***ing with the wrong person ur f***er [sic]"

Saunders said he had received a call from the manager of another club who told him Cronje had contacted him and that Cronje and Modack extorted R400 000 from him.

"They used the same modus operandi," Saunders said.

Club owners, he said, feared for their lives.

"Various other club owners are prepared to come forward with information against Modack and Cronje if the court refuses their bail," Saunders said.

'False passports and flight risks'

He had information that Cronje supplied false passports.

"I am therefore of the opinion that they are flight risks and no amount of bail conditions will be able to protect the complainants in this case against them," Saunders said.

Another statement read out in court on Wednesday, by Lieutenant Colonel Peter Janse Viljoen of the Western Cape Hawks, detailed why nightclub security was important to criminal groups.

'Turf war' and informants

Janse Viljoen said he was part of a task team investigating a "turf war" happening over Cape Town clubs.

"My role in this task team is one of handling informers close to the groups involved in this turf war as well as analysing… information and confirming it," he said.

Janse Viljoen said nightclub security, in the form of bouncers, was important to criminal groupings as those who controlled club security controlled the drug trade at, and surrounding, a particular establishment.

ALSO READ: Parallel investigation theory surfaces in Modack extortion matter

He said that controversial businessman Mark Lifman, Jerome Booysen and controversial businessman Andre Naude had controlled security at a number of establishments.

The trio, Janse Viljoen said, were financed by Kishor Naidoo, who also went by the name Kammal.

"This group has been in charge of club security/bouncer environment for a very long time," his statement said.

"They are known to use strong-arm tactics to take control of the bouncer industry by intimidating and threatening the club owners".

'63 people aligned to gangs planned to attack Modack clubs'

Janse Viljoen said that in March 2017 a new group started taking over security operations, also by using "intimidation tactics".

This group included the accused in the case, as well as a man named Waseer Hassan.

"[They] did not replace the bouncers/doormen, just offered them more money to work for them," he said.

Janse Viljoen said that in April 2017, information was received that a group of men aligned to Lifman were preparing to attack clubs where Modack’s group provided security.

"A police action was launched and 63 persons all aligned to the numbers gangs were [intercepted on] their way to Cape Town for this attack," he said.

The numbers gangs he was referring to includes the 26s, 27s and 28s.

Brother 'duped in drug transaction'

Janse Viljoen said that Naidoo and Jerome Booysen "played a part in a drug transaction that duped Colin Booysen out of money".

"Sources proclaim that Colin Booysen has taken a hit out on Kishor Naidoo," he said.

"It must also be mentioned that Colin Booysen and Jerome Booysen are brothers and are now fighting against each other. Both are known to have some control of the Cape Flats street gang 'the Sexy Boys' and are connected to the number gangs."

Janse Viljoen’s statement also detailed how one grouping in the nightclub security matter allegedly planned to target the rival group.

READ: M26 hand grenade in security turf war may be stored in a club, court hears

"On April 28, 2017, information was received that the Modack group is in possession of a M26 hand grenade, which they plan to use against the Lifman group.

"This hand grenade has not been found yet and information is that it is being kept at one of the clubs under the security of the Modack group," it said.

Other shocking allegations also emerged during proceedings on Wednesday.

The investigating officer in the Cape Town extortion case, Charl Kinnear, said someone from national Crime Intelligence let police know that Modack allegedly planned to have him, prosecutor Esna Erasmus, and police officers Major General Jeremy Vearey and a Captain Jaftha murdered.

However, Modack's legal representative Edwin Grobler said this was false information.

Read more on:    nafiz modack  |  cape town  |  gangs  |  underworld  |  crime  |  gang violence

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