Withdrawn charges against SARS trio bodes well for rule of law - Freedom Under Law

2020-02-08 18:21
Ivan Pillay, Andries Janse van Rensburg and Johann van Loggerenberg. (Deaan Vivier)

Ivan Pillay, Andries Janse van Rensburg and Johann van Loggerenberg. (Deaan Vivier)

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Freedom Under Law (FUL) said on Saturday it welcomed the withdrawal of charges against three former senior SARS officials, who were accused of being involved in the so-called rogue unit, adding it is good news for the country and rule of law.

National Director of Public Prosecutions (NDPP) advocate Shamila Batohi withdrew the charges against Ivan Pillay, Andries Janse van Rensburg and Johan van Loggerenberg that related to the bugging of the offices of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) and erstwhile Scorpions in 2007.

It was alleged bugging equipment had been installed at the NPA's head office in Silverton, Pretoria.

"The statement speaks for itself, soberly and frankly - providing reassuring and informative detail," the FUL's chairperson, Judge Johann Kriegler, said.

"In particular, it evidences careful and reasoned scrutiny by the NDPP of a thorough report by impartial experts.

"It promises honest and competent service from a vital agency in the fight to restore the integrity of the public service. It augurs well for the future of the rule of law."

Kriegler said this might be bad news for some.

"It is no doubt also a grave disappointment for certain resourceful politicians, one-eyed conspiracy theorists, media gossips and other 'useful idiots' of the state capture brigade. Sadly, however, they are unlikely to be deterred by facts."

For others, including the trio, it was good news, he added.

"For Mr Pillay, his co-accused and their many supporters within SARS and elsewhere, it is good that their names are cleared at last. For far too long, they have been the targets of the vicious lies of the 'rogue unit' fantasy, their lives and reputations irreparably damaged.

"We in the FUL now look forward to rotten apples in the NPA - responsible for instituting and pursuing these bogus charges - being swiftly identified and dealt with," Kriegler said.

Read more on:    freedom under law  |  sars  |  johann kriegler  |  shamila batohi  |  corruption

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